At the very least, Ham considers the notion that one can be a Christian and still accept evolution as treasonous. He insists that the Bible be taken literally, and that means God created the universe and everything in it in just six 24-hour days (and then took a 24-hour break), and that this occurred roughly 6,000 years ago. He is so adamantly against teaching evolution that he places it "at the root of all social ills: abortion, divorce, racism, gay marriage, store clerks who say 'Happy Holidays' instead of 'Merry Christmas.'" Phew. I gotta admire the man's devotion to his cause. But anyone who claims that the theory of evolution is responsible for divorce ... well, that's just plain nutty. But do not discount the man. He has too much support. Both here and in his own nation. That makes him not only nutty ... but dangerous. Science education is already at risk in the United States. I don't care if folks teach religion to their kids at home, that is the way things should be. But do not throw science out of the classroom just because it seems to threaten something written in a book, thousands of years ago, by a person or persons who had a limited world view.
Their Own Version of a Big Bang By Stephanie Simon, LA Times Staff Writer Feb. 11, 2006 WAYNE, N.J. — Evangelist Ken Ham smiled at the 2,300 elementary students packed into pews, their faces rapt. With dinosaur puppets and silly cartoons, he was training them to reject much of geology, paleontology and evolutionary biology as a sinister tangle of lies. "Boys and girls," Ham said. If a teacher so much as mentions evolution, or the Big Bang, or an era when dinosaurs ruled the Earth, "you put your hand up and you say, 'Excuse me, were you there?' Can you remember that?" The children roared their assent. "Sometimes people will answer, 'No, but you weren't there either,' " Ham told them. "Then you say, 'No, I wasn't, but I know someone who was, and I have his book about the history of the world.' " He waved his Bible in the air. "Who's the only one who's always been there?" Ham asked. "God!" the boys and girls shouted. "Who's the only one who knows everything?" "God!" "So who should you always trust, God or the scientists?" The children answered with a thundering: "God!" [...] [Ham] urges students to offer creationist critiques of their textbooks, parents to take on science museum docents, professionals to raise the subject with colleagues. If Ham has done his job well, his acolytes will ask enough pointed questions — and set forth enough persuasive arguments — to shake the doctrine of Darwin. "We're going to arm you with Christian Patriot missiles," Ham, 54, recently told the 1,200 adults gathered at Calvary Temple here in northern New Jersey. It was a Friday night, the kickoff of a heavily advertised weekend conference sponsored by Ham's ministry, Answers in Genesis. To a burst of applause, Ham exhorted: "Get out and change the world!" ...Ham's daily 90-second broadcasts — on themes such as life in the Garden of Eden — are heard on more than 1,000 radio stations worldwide. He's building a $25 million Creation Museum near the Cincinnati international airport. ...Several Imax theaters in the South — including a few in science museums — have refused to show movies that mention evolution or the Earth's age. Bills that would allow or require science teachers to mention alternatives to evolution have been introduced in Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma and Utah. State boards of education in Kansas and Ohio adopted guidelines that single out evolution for critique. The governor of Kentucky used his State of the Commonwealth address to encourage public schools to teach alternative theories of man's origins. [Read More]
Tuesday, February 14, 2006
Hamming it up for ID
Here at Prophet or Madman, we -- and I mean "we" in the strictest of editorial senses -- do what we can to keep you dear readers informed and entertained. And from time to time, we feel the need to give a great big Prophet or Madman salute to an individual -- or even an organization -- who has gone beyond the call of duty in either brilliance or inanity. Today we must make the time for such a salute. As anyone in the blogosphere no doubt knows, there is a vigorous creationist movement right here in the United States. For those of us living in or near Philadelphia, the movement struck quite close to "home" last year in the form of the Dover school board trials. And it looks like the debate rages on. I don't know how recently this occurred, but a writer from the Los Angeles Times was present to record a small taste of Ken Ham, the Australian-born leader of the movement (he co-founded Answers in Genesis in Australia in 1979), as he trained 2,300 elementary students to reject much of geology, paleontology and evolutionary biology as a sinister tangle of lies. In Wayne, NJ.