Tuesday, November 17, 2015

An Evening With Ken Ham

I went to see Ken Ham, co-founder of of Answers in Genesis ministries, speak at a local church last night. I had a couple of questions prepared in case there was a Q&A session where I might get a chance to speak:

1) Mr. Ham: You blame atheists as the primary opposition to your views, but atheist are a minority in the US. Isn't it true that the majority of Christians are able to reconcile the beliefs with knowledge of science, and so they are your real opposition?

2) Most or all of Creation Science is contradicted by the Laws of physics. Would not the Answers in Genesis efforts be better spent in pursuit of basic physics research to discover the fundamental flaws?

There was no Q&A, but Ham made his beliefs evident during the talk:

1) Reasonable Christians are the problem. By admitting that Genesis isn't literally true, reasonable people are allowing all manor of awful things in the name of evolution. Reasonable people are wrong, and he doesn't give a damn what they think.

2) He would never address a real scientific question. Ham's approach to science is is entirely superficial, and his interest in science ends the moment he finds a trivial sound-bite that he can use in his sermons.

And Ken Ham gives a good sermon, I'll give him that. At times he would blaze through topics, speaking very rapidly and clearly. He is a master speaker, and I'm certain he can do a fearsome Gish gallop, dishing out falsehood faster than another can hope to correct him. Unsurprisingly, some of his talk was a sales pitch for the Creation Museum, the coming Ark Park, and his trunk load of Answers in Genesis propaganda, available to you now for this special low price ...

Despite his skill, Ham never learns. The obvious errors from the Ham/Nye debate were repeated again last night. In fact, Ham pretty much hit every point that make atheists despise religion, from scientific to cultural to political. His opening sentence was to point out that religion is losing two-thirds of the coming generation, and I think atheists should thank him for that.

As I snapped the photo above, just prior to the presentation, I got the feeling Ham was picking me out of the crowd as a potential troublemaker. That was never my intent, and I'm not sure I would have left the room undisturbed if I had. I sat through the ~90 minute presentation quietly taking notes, waiting for the opportunity that never came, and left quietly when it was over.

On my way out there was all manner of of Answers in Genesis tracts for sale. I almost bought a couple of $2 booklets, and now I wish I had just to have a souvenir of the evening. It would had easy for me to grab some booklets and wander out through the crowd without paying - Yet somehow - despite my lack of a fundamental understanding of the Bible of the chapters of Genesis - I still think that stealing is wrong. Go figure.