Making Ken Ham cry some more

Poor Ken Ham is heartbroken by the latest polling data.

bibledecline

Look at that! More people regard the Bible as a book of fables than ever before. This hurts the Hamster, who declares that they must keep doing more of what has discredited the book.

In this day and age, I consider Genesis, out of all the other books of the Bible, to be the most attacked, scoffed at, and ridiculed—from within parts of the church and outside. You see, because of the indoctrination in the belief evolution and millions of years through the education system and media, many people believe that Genesis 1-11 cannot be taken as literal history. As a result, such evolutionary teaching is a stumbling block to many non-Christians even listening to the gospel from the Word of God—and many people in the church are put on a slippery slide of unbelief in the Scriptures as the infallible Word of God.

Reports like this one on the poll emphasize the great need for creation-apologetics teaching in churches and homes.

Please, please, please keep it up — these Bible literalists do so much to help the cause of atheism. When you insist that a short page of fuzzy poetry must supplant all of biology and must be regarded as absolutely, literally true in every word, rational people are given cause to doubt…and once they begin to doubt the first page of your sacred holy book, they begin to question page 2, and page 3, and page whatever, and quite soon the dedicated priests of your cult are wondering why there is a sudden, catastrophic loss of believers.

Comments

  1. jamessweet says

    It would be easy to read into it too much, but it’s interesting that the middle (and most popular) category exhibited almost no change. Probably coincidence, as people are sliding between categories (in the right direction) at roughly equal rates? Or are the Hams of the world pushing people directly from the first category to the last?

  2. Seize says

    slippery slide of unbelief

    The Atheism Water Park sounds much more fun than the Creation Museum.

  3. terrellk70 says

    “….many people believe that Genesis 1-11 cannot be taken as literal history.” Ahhhh….Yea!!!

  4. mikeyb says

    The glass half full view is that the majority still believe in the myth with qualifications. For example the garden of eden and the flood may not be literal, but abortion and homosexuality are still evils that must be destroyed.

  5. twas brillig (stevem) says

    re @3:
    speaking of “misuse of term” [other thread] Literal/Figurative is always mixed up. So isn’t Genesis 1-11, “literal”, by definition? As in “literal”=”written in a book”. Errrr, am I just hung up on that superfluous word: “literal”, when the focus is the “history” word. EG “true fact” is redundancy, a “fact” is true, no such thing as a “false fact”: contradiction in terms (oxymoron).
    So Ham is simply saying that Genesis is History, of actual events, and not just oral stories of poorly remembered events, not tales told to teach moral lessons. Seems the latter is good enough reason to teach the Bibble and use it for reference. Must he go all “literal” and not just accept it as good stories? Is Hamlet not so good, not being a documentary history of a Danish King.
    I’m happy that Ham is not doing the same with LOTR, declaring Mordor a real place that lurks for us after life, that he will show The One Ring at his Museum “real soon” (“just give my museum some more tax incentives…”). Don’t ask him how he can have the ring when Frodo tossed it into that volcano, Mt. Doom. He’ll just say that Tolkien just wrote that in to reassure us, but had the Ring himself and Ham has found it, to protect us, that’s why he’ll put it in his museum, so we can see it, but not touch it. …

  6. gardengnome says

    From 1984 to 2004 the change in the top and bottom figures is just 3 each, from 2004 to 2014, half the time, it’s double that. I’m not big on statistics but doesn’t that suggest the change is exponential and accelerating? No wonder the Hambone’s upset.

  7. grumpyoldfart says

    It’s not just the fundie preachers worried about the drop in the number of literalists. The liberal Christians are thinking to themselves, “This is terrible. If our flock gets any smarter we’re going to start losing money…”

  8. gardengnome says

    By the way, love the ironic title of the Hambone’s book, “Why Won’t They Listen“, which he shamelessly plugs in his article. They are listening Kenny, just not to you.

  9. Howard Bannister says

    James Sweet @ 1

    Or are the Hams of the world pushing people directly from the first category to the last?

    Speaking personally, I spent roughly two weeks at stage two. And they were fitful weeks.

    But mileage may vary.

  10. says

    It’s always encouraging to see this trend quantified, but I don’t want to get complacent. I keep worrying that they’ll find a way to isolate the remainder from the outside world, that they’ll turn to violence, or that they’ll push the limits of gerrymandering and other practices to maintain a disproportionate hold on America’s politics despite being a shrinking minority.

  11. David Marjanović says

    slippery slide of unbelief

    The Atheism Water Park sounds much more fun than the Creation Museum.

    Thread won in comment 2. *sulk*

  12. moarscienceplz says

    Yeah, Ken baby, keep telling us how all the layers of the Grand Canyon, each with a distinct mineral makeup, were laid down in a single flood, which then also somehow carved the canyon itself without the still wet, mud-like sides collapsing. That’s a good one!

  13. Trebuchet says

    It’s not just the fundie preachers worried about the drop in the number of literalists. The liberal Christians are thinking to themselves, “This is terrible. If our flock gets any smarter we’re going to start losing money…”

    I’d have to disagree. I grew up in one of those liberal Christian denominations and literalism — even belief in the virgin birth! — was pretty actively discouraged. 50+ years ago.

  14. unclefrogy says

    does anyone else think there might be some parallels from the past. I was thinking about process of conversion or transition in world view or religion in Rome as it changed from pagan to christian. It changed gradually starting from “the Crucifixion” until christianity was the dominate belief. Are their stages we went through to make that change and are we going through something similar now. Maybe similar to the stages of grief ?
    If their are stages what stage might we be going through at this time?
    uncle frogy

  15. ironchew says

    @ 14

    I’d have to disagree. I grew up in one of those liberal Christian denominations and literalism — even belief in the virgin birth! — was pretty actively discouraged. 50+ years ago.

    The liberal Christians are better able to compartmentalize their unfounded views. I will give the literalists credit for admitting that if Genesis gave a false account of original sin, the Christian concept of sin and Jesus’s alleged performance art piece on the cross makes no sense.

    Admitting that their scripture is not only imperfect but also dead wrong on several fundamental issues is a hard pill for Christians to swallow.

  16. cag says

    they begin to question page 2, and page 3

    Actually, the only thing not questionable in the silly book is the page numbering. /snark

  17. Trebuchet says

    The liberal Christians are better able to compartmentalize their unfounded views.

    It didn’t work for me!

  18. Ichthyic says

    It would be easy to read into it too much, but it’s interesting that the middle (and most popular) category exhibited almost no change. Probably coincidence, as people are sliding between categories (in the right direction) at roughly equal rates? Or are the Hams of the world pushing people directly from the first category to the last?

    yeah… no. There simply is no way to tell from the figures presented which way people actually went.

    it’s just as likely that some slipped from row a to row b, and from row b to row c, as it is to say the only change was from row a to row c.

    you’d actually have to see the raw data over the entire time span to figure what’s really going on.

    and really, when you control for variance, the trends are not going to be that significant either way.

    in fact, it’s rather a frustratingly small change, given that the surveys span 30 years. But, there is also the problem with the parsing of the questions used, and people’s understanding of the wording of the questions over time may also have changed.

    I’ve come to think this entire gallup poll effort has been a monumental waste of time, frankly.

  19. Ichthyic says

    Poor Ken Ham is heartbroken by the latest polling data.

    …ok, so maybe not a complete waste of time then.

  20. Ichthyic says

    Ya gotta love the Hamster’s chosen font for headlining his blog… looks like “imitation crayon”.

    very appropriate.

  21. says

    Well, as I’ve said before, the hamster has a vested financial interest in keeping this line of bullshit alive. I think he made a decision to go full creationism because at the time he financed and broke ground on his park the evangelicals were the fastest growing group and they had no full scale Disneyland of their own. He saw an itch and provided the scratch.
     
    Now he has no choice but to go full monty on creationism, whereas his financial numbers are screaming: “You’ve picked a dead end.” Something made even more clear by the failure to get his ark park going. No, I do not for a second think he believes his own tripe.
     
    Yes, he should afraid, very afraid; every percentage point lost from choice A is less and less he gets at the gate.

  22. says

    @10: I think it’s the backlash to the overreach you’re talking about that’s driving people away from the kool aid.
     
    We should thank them, in a way. They are so convinced they are in the right, they cannot conceive they are their own worst enemy. Naturally, since they can’t see they are the problem, they demonize women, black Americans, LGBTs, progressives, immigrants, atheists, etc. (ok, anyone but themselves) which then restarts the cycle.
     
    The day to worry is when they become self-aware. :)

  23. wcorvi says

    But, But, But – it’s JUST A THEORY – that the universe was created 6000 years ago in just six days. I mean, for the first five (or six, depending on which version you take to be correct) for most all of the creation, NO MAN WAS THERE, so it’s just histerical science, anyway. Uhh sorry, hisTORical.

    But the fact is, IT IS JUST A THEORY! And one which doesn’t hold up to scrutiny very well, either. Really, the entire basis of the theory is god’s miracles, which are necessary to make the facts fit the theory. Take, for example, the extremely hard rock of the Black Canyon of the Gunnison – it would take millions of years to carve that canyon, without a god-miracle. Now this does NOT prove the existence of god, rather it suggests the entire theory is suspect.

    But the most important lesson here is, IT’S JUST A THEORY!!!

  24. Azuma Hazuki says

    PZ is right in the OP: no one, but no one, makes these nuts look worse than they do.

    I’ve been dueling with the Deformed Christians (Calvinists) still, and have started to set traps for them, letting them hoist themselves by their own petards. Can’t believe I was ever afraid of the presup approach…these people are all Ham.

  25. Rex Little, Giant Douchweasel says

    That 28% (literalists) figure is interesting in light of a discussion I had with some commenters on a site dominated by fundy Christians a couple weeks ago. I asked how, if everyone on Earth today is descended from one couple (Noah and his wife), did so many different races come to exist in only 4500 years or so. Long story short, when I pointed out that Genesis clearly states that everyone not on the Ark died in the Flood, they told me that hardly anyone takes Genesis that literally, and that I was attacking a strawman.

    A pity Ken Ham wasn’t among the commenters. . .

  26. David Marjanović says

    I grew up in one of those liberal Christian denominations and literalism — even belief in the virgin birth! — was pretty actively discouraged. 50+ years ago.

    *blink* Even belief in the virgin birth!?! What denomination was that???

    Can’t believe I was ever afraid of the presup approach…these people are all Ham.

    :-) :-) :-) :-) :-)

  27. inquiringlaurence says

    “…because of the indoctrination in the belief evolution…”
    Pot, meet your friend kettle.

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