Would you debate a creationist for a bottle of Thunderbird and a pack of cigs?

Jesus fuck, but I despise the debate cultists. The most ignorant, unpleasant, dishonest people seem to have adopted this grift: set up a YouTube channel, find some over-confident idiot spoiling for a fight, invite rather more qualified people to get into hours and hours of argument, and then sit back and rake in the pennies from YouTube. You don’t need to know anything to set up a debate channel, and in fact, most of the ones I see are run by creationists and flat-earthers and other such loons.

It’s basically a digital bum fight. It’s despicable.

I guess a lot of people are catching on, though, and are refusing to play that game. The organizers are getting desperate, because there’s a challenge going around demanding that people debate Kent Hovind or…a creationist will call them chicken. They’re reverting to childish schoolyard behavior.

Any evolutionist (PhD and non-PhD) who turns down the challenge will be added to a list of those unwilling to defend evolution in a live debate.

All we require is a “yes or no”. If our challenge goes unanswered or ignored (after an extended period of time), your name will be added to the list.

Oh no. If you refuse to dignify ol’ Kent with a debate, your name will go on a list. That ought to send a chill down your spine…not. I am amused that you can get put on this list by simply ignoring Hovind, because that means 99% of the scientific community ought to be on the list of shame.

Since this challenge has been prolific and has also comprised some of the biggest debates on the topic, we understand that most evolutionist YouTubers are more than aware of this challenge. Therefore, those who ignore the challenge, and ignore our emails, or comments, will be added to the list. If an evolutionist name is on the list who steps up to take the challenge, their name will immediately be removed.

Hmm. How can a challenge be “prolific”? I don’t think he understands the word.

He also overstates the importance of these debates. They’re on YouTube, which lets anyone yammer on at ridiculous length. Arguing with idiots might, in some limited cases, be useful for educating bystanders, but no, it’s not going to have any important consequences for evolutionary theory. I’m sure a lot of YouTubers are aware of the chucklefucks ranting in odd corners of the web, but they’re more a target of derision and amusement.

Who is the author of this challenge? It’s Donny B, a used car salesman with no education in science and a remarkably inflated opinion of himself. He portrays himself as a superhero and as fair, sophisticated, and professional, when he is none of those things. He is a clueless moron. But you knew that already, since he worships Kent Hovind.

For those who have adamantly turned down the challenge with unconvincing excuses will be added to the list. Those that refuse the challenge due to the platform it is held on (Standing For Truth Ministries) will also be added to the list. Standing For Truth Ministries has hosted and moderated over 200+ debates. Donny B (who is the main host and moderator for debates) ensures a fair, sophisticated, and professional debate atmosphere. Evolutionists who refuse to debate on a fair platform (such as Aron Ra) with a demand to debate on one of their atheist dominated channels will also be added to the list. We don’t want evolutionist excuses–we want results! This is why all we require is an either “yes or no”. We do not necessarily need your reasons for why you refused the challenge.
NOTE to extra-sensitive evolutionists: the point of a challenge is that you take the challenge and debate according to the challenge requirements (moderated by Standing For Truth Ministries, equally timed, one topic at a time, civil, and professional). Therefore, those that refuse to take the challenge due to an unreasonable excuse (such as a disliking of the debate requirements) will be looked at as refusing the challenge.

The rest of the document is a hideously formatted list of people who refused or ignored challenges to waste time with Kent Hovind. It’s not even a useful list of interesting evolutionists, because browsing it reveals that it contains a peculiar mix of big names in popular science that he’ll never get, some good science communicators, horrible obnoxious people, and obscure lay people who really don’t have the chops to debate science. Donny B is really trawling the scum in the sewage pond, near as I can tell, eager to feed his channel and Hovind’s ego with anyone who will talk to him.

The list is such a mixed bag that I can’t feel anything about the fact that I didn’t make the cut. That’s right, I’m not on it, despite loudly and repeatedly telling Hovind to go piss up a rope when he’s asked to debate me; he even tried to arrange debate with me from prison, for when he got out, and I turned him down (worse, I told him he’d have to split the revenues from any such debate with me, and he balked immediately).

Maybe I didn’t get on the list because Hovind repeatedly claimed that he had debated me, and won, of course, so maybe thinks I stepped up to take the challenge. I didn’t. You shouldn’t either. No one escapes from a bumfight with their dignity intact.


  1. says

    …and it’s not like there’s no knowledgeable supporters of honest science anywhere on YouTube. The creationists surely know this as well as I do — do they have the guts to engage with them?

  2. markp8703 says

    One must answer either yes or no.

    Answering in the manner of Arkell v. Pressdram would seem appropriate.

  3. Louis says

    Debate ’em? For a bottle of Thunderbird and a pack of woodbines, I’d shag ’em!

    Actually, scratch that, I have some self respect. Two bottles of Thunderbird.


    P.S. In decades of knowing what creationists are, they have never, EVER become less mockable. It’s impressive…

    …well it would be if they didn’t have disproportionate political and financial power, but still.

  4. PaulBC says

    I have been listening to audiobooks of Nick Lane’s work (Oxygen right now) after PZ’s recent mention. One thing I like is his focus on very specific observations that are sufficient to rule out many hypotheses that sound plausible but are incorrect, and narrow it down to an accurate explanation. That’s how science works and why it cannot be resolved by debate.

    You can convince an ignorant audience of nearly anything just by sounding convincing or exploiting their preconceptions. A more educated audience can also be fooled (and is just as subject to confirmation bias). The only reliable position is to acknowledge that complex questions are never answered by throwing words at them. The only thing a debate will tell you is who is the “better” debater, which may mean who is the more convincing con artist.

    Creationists continually mine scientific publications for issues that lack consensus and then claim it “disproves” evolution. Could you turn it around the other way? Take a long list of questions connected to evolution that were only resolved through careful experiments and observations, but for which there is now a clear consensus. Ask how would creationism have answered this? I know I’m engaging in wishful thinking. The response will be some variation of Gish gallop.

    Maybe the format should not be a debate but a quiz show. Would creationists agree to a competition where they are expected to know things other than their voluminous talking points? Make it fun and hand out prizes. I’m sure it could be just as entertaining to watch.

  5. robro says

    PaulBC @ #7 — You could try to turn it around on them and demand they debate the things about the Bible that even Christians aren’t in agreement about. Of course, Christians…particularly the evangelical sort like Kent…are not really interested in any kind of intelligent conversation about any issues or questions. “Debate” is a lie where the actual purpose is to preach. That’s what they’re taught to do in their “how to win souls” classes.

  6. gijoel says

    Maybe you could debate him why it’s not a good thing to pal around with a domestic abuser and tax cheat.

  7. pilgham says

    Apparently STF has been circling the drain for some time. Back on July 5, 2022, the youtube channels Gutsick Gibbon, Dapper Dinosaur, and Creation Myths all put out videos about how Standing For Truth is a crew of disingenuous weasels. Basically STF has been getting increasingly erratic for a while.

  8. Nemo says

    I understand the deeper problem, but even on the most superficial level, even on the creationists’ own terms, I can’t see why anyone would accept “Standing for Truth Ministries” as a neutral arbiter or “fair platform”. Even a creationist could read those requirements and see that the deck is stacked.

  9. nomadiq says

    Where do I sign up to add my name to the list of people who refuse to debate liars and charlatans?

  10. John Morales says

    nomadiq, ahem.

    All we require is a “yes or no”. If our challenge goes unanswered or ignored (after an extended period of time), your name will be added to the list.

    That’s where you sign up.

  11. Buck Webb says

    The reason STF is so frustrated is they went right to the source and demanded Charles Darwin show up to debate them and he just never showed.

  12. birgerjohansson says

    If you want a repeat of the usual fundie creationist arguments, Youtube is useful.
    God Awful Movies have just released their previous patreon-only film reviews, just search “Noah Lugeons” and check the videos he has listed.
    Holy sh*t, those films and “documentaries” are…something.

  13. Russell says

    More ominous than Night Train’s demise is the diminished availability of tin foil.
    While tin continues to compete with aluminum in pharmaceutical packaging, tin foil ceased to exist as a consumer product late in the 20th century, as rolled aluminum offers roughly five times its strength as a wrapping material at 1/20th the cost.

    Hovind’s prosperity owes much to tin foil hat enthusiasts turing to theology as when deprived of their customary protection from mind-controlling rays, waves, and light-socket leakage.

    I’m surpised Ham has not added it to the long list of Ark Museum merch.