Skip to comments.Poll: Big Bang a big question for most Americans
Posted on 04/21/2014 2:52:15 AM PDT by Olog-hai
Few Americans question that smoking causes cancer. But they express bigger doubts as concepts that scientists consider to be truths get further from our own experiences and the present time, an Associated Press-GfK poll found.
Americans have more skepticism than confidence in global warming, the age of the Earth and evolution and have the most trouble believing a Big Bang created the universe 13.8 billion years ago.
Rather than quizzing scientific knowledge, the survey asked people to rate their confidence in several statements about science and medicine. [ ]
About 4 in 10 say they are not too confident or outright disbelieve that the earth is warming, mostly a result of man-made heat-trapping gases, that the Earth is 4.5 billion years old or that life on Earth evolved through a process of natural selection, though most were at least somewhat confident in each of those concepts. But a narrow majority51 percentquestions the Big Bang theory.
(Excerpt) Read more at hosted.ap.org ...
Who do you believe, God or unbelievers? Christians believe God’s Word. He does not lie.
Could it be that with every Big Bang, past and/or future, that God is reborn?
God is not a phoenix nor vice versa.
There is no such thing as a phoenix.
Good ol’ AP, mixing in the myth of global warming with real accepted scientific findings such as the age of the Earth and the Big Bang theory of the beginning of the universe. Pure sophistry.
The more scientists rely on conjecture, the less they rely on science. Why is it therefore surprising that a scientists conjectures are less believed than science?
The Big Bang: God said, let there be light, and there was light.
The “big bang” did not create the universe. Assuming it is true, the “big bang” is the result of the creation of the universe.
The “big bang” theory is not an adequate explanation for the origin of the universe.
If you have to “believe” in something, because it cannot be demonstrated by repeated, independent experiments, then the issue is faith, not science.
Evolution is a well-understood factor of biology, which affects all life and will continue to shape life for as long as life continues.
The Big Bang is inferred through observations of the universe. I am not a physicist; I have no idea whether the observational basis of the Big Bang is anywhere close to the evidentiary support of on-going evolution.
The estimated age of the earth is based on pretty solid physical observations. Some things, like the rate of radioactive decay, are constant.
Anthropogenic global warming (AGW) is based on the behavior of CO2 fluorescence in the infrared range. I have not heard any really satisfactory explanation of how this fluorescence is supposed to heat up the entire atmosphere, or seen any observational/experimental data to indicate that this is happening. The majority of scientific publications that “demonstrate” AGW are speculations about future calamities that will happen if AGW continues. Speculations, of course, do not demonstrate anything.
So, the evidentiary basis of all of these scientific theories is of various levels of reliability, with evolution probably having the most solid basis and AGW having almost no basis.
Dumba** liberal arts graduates at AP. Every scientist understands that the Big Bang theory might be wrong and a better explanation found. Not so with anthropogenic global climate change! That means that ACC is not at all like the Big Bang Theory; anthropogenic climate change is simply another religious faith which must stand despite contradictory facts or better alternatives
Why would anyone question any aspect of a scientific theory when scientists are never wrong?
Likewise, evolution is another example of science run amok. While evolutionary principles seem to be evident in the progression of life, citing evolutionary principles as evidence for the origin of life is simply bad science.
Please tell us what the “solid basis” for so-called evolution is.
There can only be ONE “causative force”.
There can only be one ETERNAL “causative force”.
I can’t think of a more irrelevant, unanswerable question than that.
“the rate of radioactive decay ~ constant”
So please explain the blind radio-isotope dating from the 1980 Mt. St. Helens eruption that showed ages greater than a million years old. Isn’t the heat and pressure from a volcanic event supposed to reset these atomic clocks? Did you ever stop to consider they used the term supposed b/c they have no scientific instruments to measure atomic decay rates within the magma - the heat and pressure are simply too great. What is the beginning ratio of father/daughter elements?
If you approach evolution as a skeptic the more rocks you uncover the less any of their supposed claims hold true. When has macro evolution ever been observed? Where are the thousands upon thousands of missing links Darwin envisioned or his theory completely falls apart? What is your explanation for stasis or better yet polystrate fossils?
There are loads of evolutionary believers on these threads but they never have even the beginnings of an explanation for these simple questions. I won’t hold my breath for your answers either though.
And they want to tell us science is science, not opinion.................
Evolution is a well-understood factor of biology, which affects all life and will continue to shape life for as long as life continues.
Too many people have gotten their scientific information from teenage mutant ninja turtles.....................
Sure, just as 1/3 of 1.0 is still only ONE third with an infinite number of decimal places to the left or right is possible...ONE at a time.
When dealing with the 'public', there are several gradations of knowledge and interest. There is, at the base, the sub to barely literate whose 'knowledge' comes from their locality and society. Up from that base comes the various levels of literacy user; popular media imbiber, the reader and the scholar.
The latter two of the above, once past adolescence, can name multiple times when popular media and political causes have trumpeted urgent needs requiring immediate remedy. While sometimes valid, far more have been wrong and quickly forgotten by their advocates. When the subject of the exercise can be made 'scientific', it frequently derives from an initial thesis that can be seized upon to motivate a political process.
So, for this survey to highlight skepticism about such issues, points more to an experience history rather than lack of knowledge IMHO. Besides, consider the three items listed here and think what difference does opinion matter to their existence or validity. The Big Bang theory affects almost no ones personal life outside astrophysics, while Evolution is more of a religious and school issue dealing with affected parents and academia.
Only human-caused global climate change affects our every-day living and political thought. The EPA and the ecology lobby have increased our energy costs in almost every way. In the years since Senator Gore's infamous 1988 Potemkin Village-type Senate Hearing, we have had constant drum-beats for carbon taxes, third-world subsidies as well as US Government subsidies (taxpayer dollars) towards 'energy conservation', ethanol production and the like.
So, to be skeptical of political campaigns and wary of expensive projects for rather nebulous results is not, in my opinion, a bad thing, not at all!
Where do I start? With the abundant fossils of creatures that no longer exist? With the observed changes of humanity over just a few thousand years? With the many mechanisms of DNA change that we observe happening all the time? Have you ever studied phylogeny, or compared a specific gene across species?
The fact is, evolution is not something that happened and then stopped. It is an on-going process that affects every species. Evolution is how microorganisms constantly change to escape our immune systems and become resistant to the drugs that we developed to cure infections.
This could have been the cause of the big bang...
Has he spoken to you lately?
After the big bang you might want to move to a galaxy far far away...
You know, I once watched con-man Kent Hovind "debate" some college professor, and bring up exactly that "argument." Did you get that "fact" from Answers in Genesis? Institute for Creation Studies? Some other creationism website?
I suppose, if I really felt like it, I could do a little digging and find out where that particular "fact" came from, and what the actual facts are. Not that it matters, really. Radioactive decay occurs at a constant rate, whether the radioisotopes are mixed into molten lava, or frozen solid.
If you approach evolution as a skeptic the more rocks you uncover the less any of their supposed claims hold true.
Yeah, right. Without taking evolution into account, there is no way I could do my job as a research scientist. Trying to work as a life scientist while remaining willfully ignorant of evolution would be like trying to work as a physicist while remaining willfully ignorant of the theory of electromagnetism. It just doesn't work.
There are loads of evolutionary believers on these threads but they never have even the beginnings of an explanation for these simple questions. I wont hold my breath for your answers either though.
That is because your "simple questions" are not based on any genuine desire to learn about the physical world you live in. For the most part, your "simple questions" are lifted directly out of creationism literature, and are meant to be "gotcha" questions. If I answer the questions, you will simply refuse to accept any answer, no matter how well I document it, and you will deluge me with even more "gotchas" from your favorite creationism sites. Frankly, I do not care to engage with people who want to remain willfully ignorant.
BTW, you can go ahead and copy-paste reams of nonsense from a creationism website, but I will not answer or try to debunk it.
Thank you for those links! I really did not feel like digging around for the actual facts regarding that claim about Mt. St. Helens—being a life-scientist, I do not have facts about geology floating freely within my head, so I would have to look up any rebuttal material. And, being a life-scientist, I spend much of my work time doing literature research within my field; when I come home, I want to relax, not engage in more literature searches.
The Big Bang was preceded by the Big Dinner and a couple of drinks.
Honestly, I do not know what you are referring to.
A mutation is a change in the DNA sequence. There are different kinds of mutations, and different ways that mutations happen, but they all result in changes to DNA sequence. This is not the same as dominant and recessive traits.
DNA is represented by the letters G, A, T, C. So, a DNA sequence might start out like this:
G G A G C G T T A C
but after mutation, could become any of the following:
G G C G C G T T A C (point mutation)
G G A G C C G T T A C (single base insertion)
G G A T G C G T A C (sequence inversion)
G A G C G T T A C (single base deletion)
G G A G C G T T A C T T A C (sequence duplication)
Etc. There are infinite ways mutations can manifest.
Dominant and recessive refer to the expression of genes. Some forms of a gene are "stronger" than other forms, and so if one copy of each form of the same gene is present, only the "strong" (dominant) one will be seen. This is why a person with a gene for bloodtype A and a gene for bloodtype O will have bloodtype A. However, a person with a gene for A blood and a gene for B blood will express both genes equally and have AB bloodtype, because A and B are equal to each other (and dominant to O).
Mixing fact with fiction isn’t going to convince anyone. There are no “observed changes in humanity” (unless one is a racist and concocts them); humans are still human.
Microorganims do not evolve, either. Even humans can build up immunities to substances like snake venom.
I agree with your rankings, and with the observation that most AGW publications seem to mostly consist of projections about what will supposedly happen in the future. But I don't think the CO2 fluorescence thing is right. The greenhouse effect comes from the the insulating property of CO2. That it reflects more infrared.
You do realize we can study their genetic code and can see changes, right? It's not building up immunities.
There are apparently people that refuse to accept that the Earth is not the center of the universe too. It makes as much sense as denying the reality of evolution.
It’s also not changing into a different organism.
Your last sentence is pure rhetoric, never mind a nonsequitur. The fact that the earth is not the universe’s center (if it has one) is observable at least, compared to the latter theory.
An organism is defined by its genetic code. One mutation may not make a different organism, but enough of them will. Evolution does not demand that species change in one generation. It is the gradual, imperceptible, changes over a long period of time that makes up evolution.
No, it is a comparable illustration of the lengths people will go to to deny reality.
Both facts are observable and have overwhelming data to support them.
“Deny reality”, you mean like AGW?
Liberal rhetoric is what it is. Not a shred of science to it.
Calling evolution “observable” is an untruth. Nobody has observed it, and those who have alleged to have been found out to be charlatans. Perhaps it’s time to wake up to science instead of quackery?
As I understand the original rationale behind the "greenhouse gas" hypothesis, CO2 "insulates" because it absorbs (and emits) light energy in a broad band in the infrared--IOW, it has a broad fluorescence band in the IR range. That is the basis of its "reflection" of infrared. The thing is, it absorbs IR energy from all directions, and reemits it in all directions. So there is no net quantity of IR energy being redirected back towards the earth, and thus no net increase in heat directed at the earth. Substances can increase the heat of the atmosphere, by absorbing the energy of visible light and reemitting it as IR light--but CO2 does not do that, since it is transparent within the visible range.
The only thing that anyone ever told me that could account for CO2 increasing the total heat energy content of the atmosphere is that within the fraction of a second where a CO2 molecule has absorbed IR light and not yet emitted it, the CO2 molecule could bump into another atmospheric molecule (e.g. N3 or O2) and transfer that extra energy to it. That would increase the kinetic energy of that molecule, which would manifest as heat.
Anyway, I hope I did not become hopelessly technical here.
I do not know what you are talking about, "mixing fact with fiction." Even within the period of written history--about 6,000 years--humans have changed. Our teeth have become smaller, for one thing, and that is just one change out of many. Look at every plant and animal that has been domesticated; it is drastically different than its wild forebears (if they still exist; not all of them do).
It would be wonderful if microorganisms did not evolve. Then we wouldn't have to spend billions of dollars developing new antibiotics, antivirals, and vaccines to try to stay ahead of them. Haven't you ever wondered why a new flu vaccine is made every year? It is because the influenza virus changes its genetic material--that is, it evolves--so as to escape our immune system. Otherwise, we'd get the flu once and be immune forever. It only takes a few months to make a new flu vaccine, and even in that short time, flu viruses can evolve enough to make the vaccine almost useless.
As a life scientist, I have to deal with evolution all the time. Evolution is as central to life science as electromagnetism is to physics.
You’re doing it again. (Apologies to the late Ronald Reagan.)
“Every plant and animal that has been domesticated” is still the same species as it was prior to domestication; no species has changed into another. A degenerate genome is not evolution; in fact, it’s a purported antithesis to evolution.
Adaptation of the same organism without a change to the organism is still not evolution. Overuse of anything (including antibiotics) creates a biological tolerance; this is anything but evolutionary. Furthermore, flu viruses are staying flu viruses notwithstanding.
As a life scientist, you should stick strictly to the scientific method and abandon Greek mythology. Promoting evolution is promoting the old Greek pagan religion.
PS. A scientist making apples/oranges comparison? Electromagnetism is a real and practical phenomenon, upon which our technology is based. Evolution remains a theory; there is no law of evolution like we have laws of electromagnetism (Maxwell’s equations for example). Please cease from debasing yourself as a scientist.
Denying reality doesn't make it any less real.
Electromagnetic theory. Gravitational theory. Evolutionary theory. Scientists all work within the framework of theory; science could not advance otherwise.
It is not my problem that you choose to reject science in favor of creationism, nor am I or the thousands of other scientists who study life science somehow “debasing” ourselves because we work in the realm of hard evidence.
BTW, the fact that humans have been able to selectively breed traits more favorable to domestication into every domestic species is a direct consequence of evolution. Without evolution, no amount of selective breeding would do anything, because genomes would be static, unchanging, and unchangeable. Corn did not exist before humans got the idea of breeding teosinte several thousand years ago.
P.S. Don’t bother pelting me with reams of anti-science. You can’t possibly convince me to stop being convinced by evidence, and there is not a thing you can do to convince the countless thousands of other scientists who work with various aspects of evolution to stop. We are going to keep on researching no matter what you want or how much anti-science you express here.
P.P.S. It is clear that you have no interest in expanding your scientific knowledge. I have no desire to further engage with someone who does not want to learn.
OK, I see what you mean. Yes, that's true. But in the case of CO2 in the atmosphere it's an imbalance because the incoming energy from the sun heats the earth, which radiates infrared. There's more infrared coming from below than above.
"Anyway, I hope I did not become hopelessly technical here."
Don't worry, I do technical.
I don't think that word means what you think it means.
I'm skeptical of AGW actually.
"Calling evolution observable is an untruth. Nobody has observed it..."
I'm not sure why you are so vocal about things you don't understand.
Nice try. Electromagnetism is governed by laws, not theory. We wouldn’t have computers if not for this phenomenon; it’s anything but theoretical. There are no such laws with respect to evolution (especially Price’s equation and Fisher’s theorem, both highly controversial among just about all scientists, never mind highly ).
I reject no science (your use of that overused liberal rhetoric further undermines you). What I reject is Greek mysticism that masquerades as science. Those that regard themselves as scientists also ought to reject same, or else start being more honest and refer to themselves as priests instead.
Being “convinced” by certain observations that one’s prejudice insists on calling “evidence” is not scientific either. Please stop pelting me and others with anti-science and bring actual science to the table instead of rhetorical statements.
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