Ken Ham’s widely watched debate with Bill Nye has brought America’s most significant fundamentalist onto the radar screen of millions of Americans for the first time. Many are shocked to discover that such views still exist and, as polls remind us, are held by more than a hundred million Americans.
The Ken Ham phenomenon is uniquely American. Creationism exists largely as an American export in other countries, and I am bombarded with inquiries when I speak on this topic in Europe. European scholars find American creationism incomprehensible. How in the world can an Australian schoolteacher with a modest education create an organization like Answers in Genesis, with a $20 million annual budget? And raise $27 million to build a creation museum? And become one of the most influential educators in the country?
Originally posted on The Daily Beast on February 9, 2014.