(Tier 1) Adventures in Christianist Earth Science Education XXXVI: Wherein Literally Everything is Wrong

We’ve just heard Earth Science 4th Edition’s rather inaccurate ideas about what they think we old earthers think about geologic history. Now they’re going to tell us what they think is wrong with our models. Buckle in, kids. It’s going to be rough.

Their intro explains the problem they have with getting their heads around this stuff.

The secular, deep-time story of Earth’s history up to this point can be summed up as being in disorder and lacking direction. The random events and motions of planetesimal collisions, drifting tectonic plates, and the ebb and flow of glaciers are natural and necessary to make their model fit the evidence.

See, they just can’t stand the idea of things just happening. Without a supreme head honcho telling everything what to do, all they can see is a frenetic jumble of events all happening willy-nilly. They don’t see the magnificent, undirected story unfolding. They don’t see the stately order of things progressing according to natural laws, everything happening according to the nature of the universe. On the scale of deep time, I see the universe and solar system and our beautiful planet following a self-choreographed routine.

And we know the broad reasons why stars and planets form and how they evolve. The motions the ES4 writers are talking about when it comes to moving plates and ebbing and flowing glaciers aren’t quite as random as they think. Shit doesn’t happen haphazardly. There’s a certain order to the chaos, patterns to the randomness, and we’re learning more about the laws driving those motions all the time.

I don’t even know how to address their other points. They try to debunk the lines of evidence we have for plate tectonics, such as paleomagnetism, fossils, and matching strata, but they’re so very terribly wrong that it would take pages to debunk every paragraph. And they’re just blurting creationist talking points that have already been debunked a thousand times. So no, I’m not going to reinvent the damn wheel. I’ll make a list of their claims and mostly just link you to where other folks have already handily disproved them.

Magnetic alignment:

  • Different directions recorded in a single plate. Of course there are different magnetic alignments recorded within a single plate! They’re pieced together from pieces of older tectonic plates. They form, merge, and break apart over hundreds of millions of years. They’re intruded by magma literally all of the time. Of course there are going to be different magnetic alignments in a single plate!
  • Different magnetic alignments in a single volcanic field: those fields can be active for millions of years. Magnetic reversals happen an average of every 200,000 to 300,000 years. Lava flows of different ages would record different magnetic alignments.

Ice Ages:

Radiometric dating:

I have to pause here to pontificate, because they really go to town on trying to disprove radiometric dating, and literally every objection they have to it is because they refuse to understand how it works. Every single objection they have is either pure nonsense or already addressed by scientists. And they really love to harp on the whole “we can’t know if the decay rates were the same in the past!” But we can. The universe basically wouldn’t be here if those rates had changed. They whine about the difference in ages between two different dating methods because ZOMG millions of years!! But they forget that those differences aren’t so huge when you’re talking about dating a rock that’s a hundred million or more years old. It’s like complaining about inaccuracy when someone says a particular person’s around a hundred years old, give or take a couple of years, although Aunt Minnie swears she’s not a day over 95.


Meme is a scene from The Lord of the Rings movie trilogy. Gandalf is gesturing at Theodin, who is sitting on his throne with his hand over his eyes. Caption says, "Can you believe this bullshit?"

And then we get to their misinformation about fossils.

Click all of those links to discover why young earth creationists are wrong. See how they lie? They have to lie about what we know and how we know it. They have to pretend we haven’t already addressed every “problem” on their list. They can’t be honest about secular science, because their whole young earth house of cards collapses when they admit the truth.

Secular scientists don’t know everything. But we know enough to show that our basic models and theories are sound, and young earth creationism fails completely.

Next, they’re going to tell us “The Young-Earth Geologist’s Story.” Oh, my loves. Prepare for maximum fail. Yes, even worse than we’ve just seen. And it’s hilarious – until you realize there are children being taught this tripe is truth.

I’m gonna go drink myself into a temporary coma. BRB.

Demotivational poster shows a tabby cat lying on a leopard print blanket, one paw over its eyes. Caption reads, "Facepalm. When words just can't describe how badly you failed."

(Tier 1) Adventures in Christianist Earth Science Education XXXVI: Wherein Literally Everything is Wrong