In my last post about the creation museum, I presented how Ken Ham reconciles fossil evidence with his beliefs by making things up; all while attempting to make it seems as if that is that is what scientists do as well. While it might impress the scientifically illiterate sheeple that flock to his facility, someone with an elementary knowledge of science sees through the ruse immediately. The whole enterprise comes off as a childish attempt at playing scientist.
The whole point behind Ken Ham playing scientist is to convince people that their beliefs about things like Australopithecine facial hair or Sauropod thighbones really matter. If you believe the scientists, then you have rejected God’s word – you dirty scoundrel!
If you reject God’s word by trusting that scientists can do their jobs – the same way you trust your family doctor can do her job – then you are probably a completely empty person.
I have a big issue with Ham’s whole “starting points” mantra that I did not address in my last post. It might seem obvious to the sophisticated – dare I say sexy – readers of this blog, but it is worth mentioning anyway.
Ken Ham is going out of his way to advance the idea that scientists are just assuming things like the age of the Earth. Nowhere in Ken’s “museum” are radiometric dating techniques ever discussed – ever. In fact, it is never even discussed why he believes the Earth to be only 6000 years young! Young, by the way, is the appropriate term, since we know how old the Earth is.
Ken would have people believe that scientists are just choosing things like 4.6 Billion years out of personal conviction, just as he is picking 6000 out of faith. This is so disingenuous it makes my mouth froth. Not only is there a reason scientists know how old the Earth is, Ken Ham has a very specific historical reason for why he thinks it is so young! He lacks the courage of his convictions to such a degree that he cannot even present his own reasoning. I excuse the failure to present theopposing position as typical religious obfuscation; but to fail at presenting your own reasoning is nothing more than intellectual cowardice.
Ok, now that I have that tangent off my chest, back to the story!
If you do not accept God’s word as a starting point – and by God’s word, Ken Ham means Ken Ham’s version of God’s word – you a completely empty person and part of the problem with this world.
The real issue is not my fellow fork-tongued atheists, it is the more moderate Christians who believe in God, but don’t act like a bunch of silly jackasses about it. This came as somewhat of a surprise to me; I was expecting the Creation Museum to go on-and-on about how atheists are the scum of the earth. Instead, the museum seems more geared towards convincing people that already believe that they just are not believing hard enough.
After watching a series of videos that involve, among other things, a teenager with a “bag of drugs” and a pregnant girl talking with her friends about how pregnant she is, we learn the reason all of those awful things happened. Brace yourself: Their family goes to a church that does not accept the literal word of Genesis. Gasp!Oh dear heavens, the shepherd hath lead the flock astray! It is exceedingly comical to me for someone to believe that the reason his or her teenage daughter went out and got pregnant was because she thinks the Earth is 4.6 billion years old. Certainly, that has nothing to do with your failure to communicate with her as a parent – right? Of course not! It has everything to do with the community’s failure to accept things like talking snakes and magical boats without question. The agents of this vacuous morality are the church leaders who are not teaching their congregations the correct fairy tales:
The obvious point here is to convince the audience that you must never believe anything that could possibly contradict a literal interpretation of the bible. If you do, your worst fears as a parent will almost certainly come true. To be honest, this line of thinking is just plain stupid. It is doubtful that it actually convinces anyone that does not already believe it. However, it did make me think of a serious question: how dangerous are the people that do believe it?
Think about it. The people who truly believe the line of crap fed to them by people like Ken Ham think that the reason bad things happen in the world, from teenage pregnancy to nuclear war, is because people don’t believe the bible enough. Not only that, they think those unbelievers are what stands between them and a perfect, Godly world. They really believe that. That means you, me, moderate Christians, liberal Christians, moderate Muslims, the Buddhist guy at the airport, etc. – we are all the reason paradise hasn’t returned to Earth yet. What are these people willing to do to ensure paradise returns, given that they truly believe these things?
For me, this was the most disturbing part of my trip. The science was hokey, the displays laughable, but the trip into their minds was upsetting. Sure, you read about people like Ken Ham, you argue online with them, on occasion you meet one in real life. You probably have a good idea about what they think. But to be confronted by it in all its celebrated glory – that was something quite different.
I think it’s important that people realize Ken Ham and all his fundamentalist, literalist buddies see everyone as the enemy – especially more liberal theists or people of other faiths. What they believe is a joke, but the way they act on those beliefs is far from a joke. They are actively seeking to create the kind of theocracy that gives George W. Bush wet dreams. People like Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson – my new favorite target on social media, look him up – actively pander to the people who believe these ridiculous things in order to be elected – and it works. Think about the agenda they are pushing. It is a scary world they envision.
Ok, so things got a bit serious there. Next week, let’s have some fun. I want to bring you deeper into the world of pure imagination by presenting the History of the World, according to Ken Ham.