I, like many other people, watched a lively debate last night between Bill Nye, and Ken Ham. If you have not had a chance to view this debate you can catch it here. It will be there for viewing the next few days.
The debate was, “Is creation a viable model of origins in today’s modern, scientific era?” This is a hot topic here in the United States, especially when it comes to the education of our children and what should be taught in public schools. There are many strong opinions on both sides of the argument, and therefore you will probably not need to look very far to find many a commentary on this subject.
I personally am not writing this blog to take sides in the issue. (This will be a shock to anyone who knows me, because I’m opinionated!) Granted I could pick apart things both men said, but that is not what I’m going to do. Why? Because honestly I think there is something more important I’d like to discuss right now.
I want to just thank both men for their willingness to take the time to discuss a hot button issue in a civilized, organized, well researched, well prepared format that was respectful of the other person and the people they represent. Sure they CLEARLY had points they disagreed on, and they both had emotional concerns they wanted to express. Yet, for the most part, they kept their cool. That to me is an important thing for people to see. I believe that in a society which has lost the art of respect, it is a wonderful thing to see such professionalism shown. It was refreshing to see a debate that didn’t lower itself to “who can yell the loudest must be right”, as I have unfortunately witnessed too many times in my own public high school background.
I agree with Mr. Nye when he stated that if America falls behind in the sciences we will have a hard time competing in a global economy. The need for more people in the sciences I believe is a concern for all Americans on both sides of the debate. In a way I got the impression that part of the reason for the debate was that Mr. Ham was asking the academic community for more flexibility, which would allow for more varied opinions in academia, which would allow for more people to work in the sciences.
The reality is that people don’t have to agree on all the theories held in the varying scientific fields to be able to work together for a greater good of this nation. There are people of many beliefs who have contributed to the science related fields all over the world. It could even be argued one doesn’t even need a good grasp of reality to contribute to our scientific advancement. What they do need however is respect for others.
I think if more people found more scientific leaders willing to kindly and respectfully discuss topics like Mr. Nye and Mr. Ham did, rather than the name calling, condescension, and “my way or the highway”, attitude that has been displayed by some, we might see more people willing to go into these fields. (Just to be clear I’m not trying to point fingers or pick a fight with anyone, quite the contrary. I’m saying there is too much of that already out there, and not enough of the “let’s move forward” attitude that has made this nation great.)
I would like to see more openness for discussions without name calling like Mr. Nye and Mr. Ham displayed, because respectful, researched discussion just sharpens the minds of the people who are involved. If we are excel as a nation we have to play like a team. You don’t have to agree with everyone on your team’s beliefs, you just have to be able to work with them. We don’t want to lose track of the goal for the sake of ego.
So, thank you once again Mr. Nye, Mr. Ham, and all those who had a part in last night’s debate. I feel the debate last night was a win for all because I personally was left with many more questions about the universe we live in. If others were as well, then I’d say some discoveries are on the horizon!
How about you? Did you find yourself asking questions after the debate? Did it rekindle an interest in science or the Bible for you?