Bill Nye, known as the "Science Guy", took on Ken Ham at the Creation Museum in Petersburg, Ky., Tuesday night. Ham, founder of the museum, believes in creationism. He follows the bible story that the Earth was created 6,000 years ago by God, while Nye subscribes to the scientific "Big Bang" theory.
The two men were debating a question long plaguing humans, what are the beginnings of life on Earth? Nye is worried that the United States' world leader status is in jeopardy if creationism is taught to our children, according to the Daily News on Feb. 4.
The well-known scientist feels technology is what gives the U.S. its leading edge, and that we'll fall behind other countries if science isn't emphasized in our schools.
Nye, who hosted the 1990s TV show "Bill Nye The Science Guy", did start out with a caveat though. He said that he understands billions of people around the world are deeply religious, whose lives are enriched by their wonderful religious communities.
But, he pointed out, these same people don't at the same time believe the "extraordinary" view that the Earth is a mere 6,000 years old.
Ham believes that the Bible tells the factual account of the beginning of the universe and the creation of human beings. Nye believes the Earth was created over time following a big bang billions of years ago, and eventually people evolved over time after the formation of life.
"If we continue to eschew science...we are not going to move forward," Nye said, adding, "We will not embrace natural laws. We will not make discoveries. We will not invent and innovate and stay ahead."
Some in the scientific community criticized Bill Nye for taking part in the debate, since his celebrity status may ultimately put money in the pockets of Ham's organization and others like it.