I Got a Golden Ticket! I’m Going to the Nye vs. Ham Debate!


A week ago, I got super excited. It was announced that there was an upcoming debate scheduled between Bill Nye, the “Science Guy,” and Ken Ham on February 4th. Not only that, but it will be just a few hours away from me at the Creation Museum (so called) in Kentucky. Needless to say, I was planning to go.

I’ve seen a few similar debates live, but never between such “giants” of their field in person. Bill Nye, the ever sought out scientist who studied under Carl Sagan in college, will be arguing on the side of biological evolution. Ken Ham, the founder of the “Answers in Genesis” ministry and a young earth Creationist, will be arguing on the side of a literal “7 day” creation model via the God of the Bible. The official question is, “Is creation a viable model of origins?” I presume they mean the origin of humanity and not the origin of the universe in this case. Maybe they will cover both, though that would be a lot of “ground” as it were.

I’m not much for watching your typical sports games. No major sporting events hold much allure for me personally. But a real battle of science, philosophy, or ideology…NOW you’ve got my attention! I’ve watched hundreds of debates on youtube and other online sites. From Hitchens vs. Lennox, to Russell vs. Copleston, I’ve watched or listened to any and all I can find. The only thing that excites me more that such a debate is an actual dialogue, being so much the rarer in this world.

Many have asked the question, “Why would Nye even waste his time debating a young earth creationist anyway?!” Well, I’m glad he is. I think that Nye is a man of dialogue, much in the same fashion that his kindly and outspoken predecessor Carl Sagan was. Not that I have any pretentions about Nye opening Ham’s eyes to the merits of modern science. Giving up on a literal interpretation of the first book of the Bible would be very inconvenient when you’re just getting started on building a “life sized ark” project that isn’t doing too well financially. But perhaps some “collateral damage” can be caused in the name of enlightenment. After all, one doesn’t have to give up on a god to accept the Theory of Evolution as scientifically valid.

So last week, when I saw that tickets would be for sale on January 6th, I was counting the days. Unfortunately, the Answers in Genesis website didn’t say what time they would go on sale. Would it be midnight? I stayed up until 1am…no luck. Next, I set my alarm for 6 a.m. and woke up with a start at the appointed time. Still no registration up online or time announced for ticket sales; back to bed. I checked again at 9 a.m. and still nothing. I called the Creation Museum. The nice lady said tickets would be on sale at 10.  YES! At 9:55, I was clicking “refresh” once a minute. THEN, at 9:58, the registration icon popped up two minutes early! CLICK! “Error Code”… CLICK! “Error Code”…

I tried to call and the phones were on infinite loop of the pre-recorded museum message. I checked their facebook page while incessantly refreshing and trying to add tickets to my cart. Everyone else posting was having the same problem. By 10:15, AnswersInGenesis.org was still operating with the efficiency of the Obamacare website. Then came the horrible news…the live room of about 800 seats was sold out, so on to “plan b.” I’d have to try for the 200 seat simulcast room. After twenty more minutes of frustration, I almost gave up figuring it was sold out too. But, I wanted this bad! I was working two tabs, refreshing, adding to cart, refreshing, adding to cart, “error code.” Then it happened…my cart loaded!

So my friends, I have my “golden ticket.” I also booked my hotel, since I figured they’d be packed soon. It will be hard to decide whether to dress respectably or wear my “Hitch Slap” t-shirt from the “Cult of Dusty.” Either way, I’ll be there with bells on. I had to add a day pass for the museum to buy my ticket, so I’ll get to hang out early and ride a dinosaur. I won’t disappoint on my blog reporting, so be sure to follow me for updates. Keep an eye out for me if you go and say, “Hi.” After the debate, we can grab a beer. And even if we don’t agree, we can still have a dialogue.

See links for info:

Debate info page: http://www.answersingenesis.org/outreach/event/Nye-Ham-Debate/

Bill Nye on creationism: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gHbYJfwFgOU

Ken Ham response to Nye video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JxX11c1cSWU

5 thoughts on “I Got a Golden Ticket! I’m Going to the Nye vs. Ham Debate!

  1. I’ve been psyched about this debate since it was announced, too. It will be interesting to see how Ham and the Creation Museum handles it. They’re obviously the home team, so will they moderate it fairly? Will Ham give Bill all of his allotted time without interrupting him? Were both debaters allowed to come up with questions? My gut tells me that they won’t be fair because so much is on the line for them, but Bill Nye is no joke, and he won’t put up with any shit. It’s going to be awesome. I’ll be watching the live stream, so if you need someone to discuss it with afterwards, send me a message. Have fun!

    • I’m in great anticipation as well! I’ve seen a lot of folks selling Bill’s presumed abilities to rep real science well. I disagree. I think it will be a blast. Maybe I’ll get to have a beer with some peeps after the debate and chat it up. I’ll be interested to get your take after 🙂

  2. I find it interesting while reading your blog that you appear to be very biased. I thought the “creationists” were supposed to be the closed- minded set.
    Also, when you represent science, please do so correctly. Science, simply, is based upon hypothethis/theory/fact through a testing mechanism with controls. It is only fact when established through testing scientifically. If it is impossible to duplicate then, in scientific rules, it cannot be established as fact. That is the scientific process and anything suggested outside of that would be personal conjecture. Let’s stick with true science and call anything outside of that “opinion:”

    • Thanks for your thoughts! This is my personal blog and not a science journal. Also, not being a scientist, I don’t represent science; though I do discuss and present facets of it at times. So far as the Scientific Method goes, I’m with you regarding the process and veracity of its findings. I think if you follow my blog, you’ll find a great deal of subjectivity immersed with what could be demonstrated as fact or no. I cover a variety of subjects via my own personal commentary.

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