The debate, for those who did not watch it, took over 2 1/2 hours. The format was two brief opening statements, followed by a thirty minute statement by each man. Tom Forman from CNN was the moderator. The entire debate was very civil and Tom Forman did a very professional job. The debate is available on Youtube, http://youtu.be/_04S0fYU7FI
After the 30-minute opening speeches, each man had a five-minute rebuttal speech. These were followed by written questions from the audience, alternating evenly between the men. They each had 2 minutes followed by a one minute response from the other man. At the end there was one question directed to both men, so they each had two minutes. Then each man had a closing statement. Ken Ham won a coin toss and went first. Bill Nye closed the debate.
The debatelive.org site has a link in the lower right corner to Answers In Genesis articles. These articles answer most of the technical questions Bill Nye brought up during the debate.
Bill Lovegrove’s blog http://pilgrimworks.com/blog/?p=128 has a much briefer point-by-point refutation of Bill Nye’s comments from his thirty-minute opening comments. It is in laymen’s terminology and we highly recommend it.
My comments are not going to cover the same ground these other people covered.
1) Answers in Genesis has a page of positions creationists should not use because it makes the person using the fallacious argument look foolish. Bill Nye hammered on “what Ken Ham believes”, attempting to make creationism some kind of Ken Ham cult. He opened with such a statement. He closed with such a statement and he repeated this kind of nonsense throughout the debate. He should learn from Answers in Genesis that these comments simply make Bill Nye appear foolish. Creationists follow Jesus Christ and the Word of God. While we are thankful for the ministry of Ken Ham, Ken Ham has nothing to do with what we believe.
2) Ken Ham correctly pointed out, from his opening statement to his closing statement and everything in between, that the argument is entirely about two different belief systems. He constantly used the terms operational science and historical science. That is, science as used by engineering to make things contrasted with science attempting to explain the past with naturalism. He clearly pointed out the bias against any belief in the supernatural. I personally do not like the terms operational and historical science. What is now condemned by people like Bill Nye is the historic, classic position of science and clearly defined by men such as Isaac Newton, Maxwell, Galileo and Albert Einstein. The modern vision of naturalism in science to exclude God or any form of the supernatural is based in the public mind on Karl Popper’s concept of falsification. So Creationism is actually historic or classic science and Bill Nye represents moral relativism or naturalism. It can also be called Secular Humanism.
3) Bill Nye desperately attempted to divide faith/religion/ belief from science. He constantly attempted to claim that he could accept the billions of religious people worldwide as long as they kept their religion separate from, in Bill Nye’s thinking, “the real world of science.”
4) While Bill Nye never used the term religion to describe his naturalistic view of science, he clearly understood that it is supported by taxation and government mandates. He repeatedly attempted to deny the religious aspects of his belief system and insisted that we must continue to support a belief in deep time and evolution to continue to advance in technology. The truth is just the opposite, as Ken Ham repeatedly pointed out. People who reject the consequences of naturalism are the inventors who improve our lives for the Glory of God and the benefit of mankind.
5) One of the most interesting comments Bill Nye repeated throughout the debate was his insistence on using phrases such as “you people here in Kentucky.” It is difficult to know whether he was simply belittling and demeaning the audience or if Bill Nye was so ignorant that he failed to grasp that there was a worldwide audience in the millions. While I certainly do not have access to the exact numbers, it is possible that this was Bill Nye’s largest audience ever for a single broadcast.
6) Ken Ham used videos of accomplished scientists who are also Creationists. He repeatedly referred to many more accomplished scientists who are also Creationists. Yet in spite of this well-documented evidence, Bill Nye repeated throughout the debate that Creationism was not science.
7) Ken Ham very early in the debate presented a list of predictions Creationists made. Each prediction was not believed at the time it was made, yet has proven to be true. One example is the 19th century evolutionary belief that humanity was divided into five races. The Bible teaches that we are all descendants from Adam and Noah, therefore equal. That prediction has certainly proved to be true. Yet Bill Nye throughout the debate and in his closing statement continued making the false accusation that Creationists do not make valid predictions.
The debate closed with Bill Nye claiming that he could be convinced if Creationists would simply “show him the evidence.” The truth is that evidence which Bill Nye ignored was presented throughout the debate. The evidence which Bill Nye claims would convince him exists. It was presented to him and he ignores it.
The issue is not evidence, but what you choose to believe.
Image is from the official debate promotional graphics.