Just a Little Common Sense

For a life based on reason, ethics, literature and art.

Debunking Creationist Claims is a Waste of Time

with 12 comments

Debunking creationists is a waste of time unless you do it publicly, on a large forum. This has to do with the Creationist’s intentions and tactics. We need to realize that they are not really interested in changing your mind in particular – they go only for a large number of people. Any people. Any “soul” that is “saved” is a success to them, and numbers is what matters here. This means that most creationists will not engage you seriously, but rather spend their time “saving” five less skeptical people instead of the one die-hard skeptic who has had his heart already hardened by Satan. Understanding this mind-set is crucial, because it makes a huge difference to how one should approach engaging them.

There is a statistical certainty at the heart of all creationist propaganda: The larger the number of people exposed to their ideas, the more will be among the crowd who are susceptible to their lies, ignorance and misrepresentations. If you can stand up and debunk all their arguments, they won’t care. They’ll simply move on to the next person willing to listen.
It has been shown time and time again that creationists tend to simply ignore the debunking of their claims – it is not important to them. As long as they can use a claim to “save” souls, they will continue to use it to do so.

Since their main concern is “saving” people, the arguments and all the pretend-science is only a means to an end. Their actual respect for the argumentative weight of scientific arguments is incredibly low. Hence, they will simply ignore what you have to say. Their mind-set is such that you cannot by scientific arguments change their views, since to them science is only one of many tools to employ to “do the lords work”. They hold it in low regard. So if you try to engage their arguments at their scientific face-value, showing them to be complete rubbish, they will simply laugh at how seriously you take all this science-stuff and how little you know about what (to them) is the real, important truth.

So if you ever engage in a discussion with a creationist, the listeners are what really matters. Your scientific arguments will not convince the creationist, but you might engage the common sense of the audience, inform them enough to vaccinate them against creationist propaganda.

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12 Responses

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  1. It is true, it is a waste of time to engage them. Their minds are set in stone, and not just regular stone, but the stuff black holes are made of. However, they have readers and listeners, and maybe I won’t reach millions of people, but I can reach those few people. Maybe. I’m not even interested in turning them into atheists, but it would be nice to show them that it’s possible to read something and then say publicly, “I call bullshit!”

    That’s the real problem with these people. Nobody ever says “No!” to them. It’s important for that alone.

    The Other Weirdo

    September 15, 2010 at 03:06

  2. I highly doubt that anyone could debunk the beliefs of a creationist.

    I looked into it… science, evolution, conspiracy theories that religion was created to keep control of the population, ect.

    You know, that would be a good post for you ;) Well, if you haven’t already.

    Nykk S.

    November 8, 2010 at 20:42

    • Not sure what exactly you mean by “debunking beliefs”. Sure, the chance to get them to abandon their beliefs is small, but debunking their claims is almost laughably easy for almost any literate person.

      Ochiudo

      November 9, 2010 at 01:09

  3. Debunking beliefs, debunking claims… all the same to me.

    I really do not think that it would be “laughably easy”…

    Nykk S.

    November 9, 2010 at 01:14

    • Well frankly, I don’t care wether you think it’s easy or not. I’ve spent years doing it, I know my way around biology, and I’ve spent enough time on answersingenesis.org to know each and every single creationist argument. Their claims are nonsense, and it doesn’t take too much more than passing a Biology 101 class to see that.
      If you don’t believe me that’s fine, but if you don’t have an argument for creationism other than one that boils down to
      “I’ve looked into it, science is an evil conspiracy!” then I’m not interested.

      Ochiudo

      November 11, 2010 at 12:10

  4. Haha… take it easy.

    So, I take it you were referring to the arguments that creationists use against evolution…

    My apologies…

    Nykk S.

    November 12, 2010 at 20:43

    • I am taking it easy :D You’re not the first to tell me to calm down in moments when I think I’m being the very definition of the word… It seems that I often sound more aggressive than I mean to, an issue which I hope will resolve sooner or later as my grasp of the language gets better :)

      Anyhow, I may have misunderstood what you meant with your “I’ve looked into it” -statement. It sounded like you were accusing science and evolution of being conspiracy theories, so for a second there I thought you were just another random faith-head about to spam me with bible verses. Sorry for that misconception.

      And yes you’re right, I was mainly thinking of the creationist’s anti-evolution “arguments”, although I do not think debunking their arguments for the existence of a supreme being was much harder to do. The ontological argument, moral argument, teleological argument, astrological argument… they are all so old they have names for christs sake. Names!
      The Most recent of Pro-God-arguments haven’t changed in bloody centuries.
      So yes, debunking them is easy. Admittedly a little less easy than pointing out their blatant lies and misconceptions about most of the hard sciences, but it still doesn’t qualify as “hard”.
      Watch a single debate with Chris Hitchens or Sam Harris, and you’ve got most of the theist’s arguments covered. Or go to rationalwiki.org and type in the name of any of those arguments, and you’ll see the counter-arguments neatly listed. Alternatively, simply rely on common sense. With even just a moderate amount of training (or experience) in debating techniques, that ought to suffice.

      Ochiudo

      November 15, 2010 at 19:27

  5. Hmm… So English is not your native language? I would never have guessed… You speak better than most natives. :)

    Okay, now that we are on the same page, I have to agree with you. Here is the crazy part– I am a creationist. I don’t like to shove bible verses down one’s throat, though.

    I say “their” arguments because even I can debunk their claims. Sad, huh? Even if I do not know the science, all it takes is about 5 to 10 minutes of research for most of them.

    I was never really in to science, but I do appreciate it. We would not be where we are now without it.

    By the way, great blog :D

    Nykk S.

    November 15, 2010 at 22:19

    • Haha… my last comment is proof that your English is better…

      Sorry, when I am in a hurry I do not pay much attention to what I am writing.

      Nykk S.

      November 16, 2010 at 00:58

      • LOL, Proof that my english still isn’t that good is that I don’t notice any typos in your previous comment :D

        You’re getting me interested… just what exactly do you mean when you say you’re a creationist? Like a full-blown the-bible-is-a-literally-accurate-historical-account creationist who believes the earth is less than 6000 years old?
        Or an Old Earth Creationist? Or one of those who even believe in evolution but still think there must be a god to have set off the first spark, because science has yet to reproduce Abiogenesis in a lab?

        I wonder, because I cannot square the idea of somebody actually having a decent understanding of evolutionary theory and yet being a biblical creationist at the same time. That just doesn’t add up, and yet you say that a) you can debunk creationist claims (implying some understanding of evolution) and b) saying that you’re a creationist… I’m confused. >.<

        Ochiudo

        November 24, 2010 at 13:50

  6. Sorry for the delay…

    Well, I really do not know what I believe about the age of the earth, but yes, I pretty much do believe and go by what the bible says.

    I do not understand all of the science behind the evolutionary theory, but like I said, I did some research (and picked up enough information to understand the basics), so yeah… even I think the claims I read are crap.

    Even though evolution is not something I believe in I do like to learn (a little) about it. I remember learning about it in school, but honestly I cannot recall a thing.

    I guess I am a bit more open-minded than most “Christians”, and probably one of the few that know you cannot prove evolution wrong.

    Nykk S.

    December 9, 2010 at 22:34

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