Tonight at 7 p.m. ET, millions of viewers are expected to watch live the most important debate on Evolution vs Creationism since the Tennessee Monkey Trial of 1925. A face-off will take place at the Creation Museum, located in Petersburg, KY, between Bill Nye the Science Guy and creationist Ken Ham.
Each debater will begin with five-minute opening statements, followed by 30-minute presentations, and finishing with two rounds of five-minute rebuttals. Audience members will also be allowed to ask questions. Tom Foreman, CNN correspondent, will be the moderator.
Both men expressed their doubts of converting the other tonight. Ham, who heads the museum, said, “I really don’t want people looking at it as who won and who lost.” Nye has been quoted as saying, “I don’t think I’m going to win Mr. Ham over, any more than Mr. Ham thinks he’s going to win me over.”
The Creation Museum, location of tonight’s event, definitely has a different view than the mainstream evolutionary perspective, and its displays depict history in accordance with a literal interpretation of the Bible.
The Creation Museum, firmly upholding the Christian perspective of Genesis, has diorama displays showing humans and dinosaurs sharing the Earth. The dinosaur displays are dated to roughly 2348 B.C., the time of the Great Flood, as calculated by Bishop James Ussher in the 17th century.
Other displays describe the inaccuracy of radioisotope dating and the fossil record. One display shows how the universe has been around for about 6,000 years.
Ham says “Of the people who come here, probably a majority of them would support our position on Genesis, and they’re thrilled with the quality. Usually the comment I get is that it exceeds their expectations. They love having a family-friendly place that they can bring their children to in particular, and not worry about what they see and what they read. It teaches what they’re teaching their children.”
Brian Weaver, who stopped by the museum with his family, feels familiar with both sides of the debate thanks to Bill Nye’s long-running science TV show for kids. “We home-school our kids, and we use Bill Nye quite a bit. We love his videos from an educational standpoint, but from our Christian perspective, we just gloss over the parts where he gets into an evolutionary perspective.”
Sid Latham, a friend accompanying the Weavers and a preacher at the Fayette Church of Christ in Lexington expressed his hopes evolutionists and creationists will find a way to get along. “I think we’d get a lot more done if we didn’t get offended over what the other side says,” he said.
Bill Nye’s website as well as NBCNews.com and MSNBC.com will offer live video coverage of the debate beginning at 7 p.m. ET Tuesday. You can also watch the debate on YouTube, courtesy of Answers in Genesis. According to Answers in Genesis, more than 10,000 churches and other groups are planning to carry the debate’s free live video stream. Check with your local ministry on availability.