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The Age of the Earth: Science and Scripture

The cosmic calendar is a way of visualizing natural history by compressing the entire history of the universe into a single year. In this calendar, the Big Bang occurred at midnight on January 1, and the present time is the last milliseconds of December 31. The Milky Way galaxy was formed in mid-May, and our solar system in September. Multicellular life appeared in early December, the first vertibrates on December 22, dinosaurs on Christmas Day, humans in the late night hours of New Year's Eve.

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We Can't Avoid GMOs

Are genetically modified organisms (GMOs) safe to eat? If you ask the American public, an overwhelming majority will say no. But limit the poll to scientists, and an even more overwhelming majority will say yes. 

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Methodological Naturalism

Terry Mortenson of Answers in Genesis (AiG) is not a fan of scientific study of the earth. According to Mortenson, the entire field of geology is rooted in anti-theistic philosophy.

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Googling the Dinosaurs' Demise

Have you heard what happened to the dinosaurs? It's pretty big news, the latest cause célèbre among science educators and advocacy groups. Google "what happened to the dinosaurs" and you'll see a lot of results like these:

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Simpson's Paradox

Simpson's paradox is named after statistician Edward Simpson, who first described the effect in a 1951 paper titled The Interpretation of Interaction in Contingency Tables. Simpson described a scenario where the results of a scientific study appear to support one conclusion, but when the results are split to account for a particular variable, the results show a different conclusion.

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How and Why

The ancient Babylonians believed solar eclipses were a sign of the anger of the gods. Often, the priests recommended appeasing the gods by sacrificing the king. But Babylonian astronomers recorded the dates and times of eclipses, and discovered a regular pattern. Armed with this knowledge, they were able to predict the date of the next eclipse. The king, realizing what this could mean, temporarily abdicated. A convicted criminal was placed on the throne as a substitute, only to be executed after the eclipse arrived as predicted. The real king could then resume the throne in safety.

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Is Intelligent Design Science?

Its proponents claim it has scientific merit; its detractors say it is grounded in religious doctrine. But the truly salient characteristic the Intelligent Design (ID) movement in the first three decades is the amount of time it has spent embroiled in court battles.

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"I'm Not a Scientist"

Five years ago this week a massive snowstorm shut down Washington, D.C. for several days. The family of Oklahoma Senator James Inhofe built an igloo on the National Mall and labeled it "Al Gore's new home" in a mocking tribute to Gore's efforts to publicize the seriousness of global warming. Inhofe told reporters he thought the igloo was "really humorous".

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Olbers' Paradox

“It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble,” Mark Twain once said. “It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.”

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Can We Find a Middle Ground on Measles Vaccination?

One side says mandatory vaccination is the best way to protect children from deadly diseases. The other side says vaccinations often cause the diseases they are supposed to prevent, and can sometimes even trigger autism. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, a possible 2016 presidential candidate, has tried to strike a middle ground by calling for balance between public health concerns and parental choice. But is a middle ground even possible?

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