Hambo Re-Invited to the the U. of Central Oklahoma

We recently wrote Outrage of the Century — Hambo Expelled!, about the news that Ken Ham (ol’ Hambo), the ayatollah of Appalachia, had been un-invited to speak at the University of Central Oklahoma (UCO), after a student organization had signed him up to speak.

Today, our clandestine operative in Kentucky — code named “Blue Grass” — brings to our attention this new item at the website of Answers in Genesis (AIG), Hambo’s creationist ministry: University in Oklahoma Reinstates Ken Ham Lecture. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us for emphasis:

Late last month, internationally renowned Christian speaker and author Ken Ham of Answers in Genesis was uninvited from speaking at the University of Central Oklahoma (UCO). Today, UCO President Don Betz has invited the AiG president to give his talk, “Genesis and the State of the Culture,” on the Edmond campus.

How did that happen? AIG says:

Although campus activists put enormous pressure on the student body president to cancel the lecture at UCO’s Constitution Hall, President Betz has decided to restore Ham’s lecture for March 5. … Ham declared,

I’m thrilled my talk at UCO is back on again. UCO officials have definitely heard from many concerned state legislators, several local residents, and alumni about the denial of our right to free speech. Furthermore, by moving my talk from the evening to the afternoon, we now have the opportunity to reach even more UCO students during the school day. UCO is a commuter campus, and many of its students might not have been able to attend in the evening.

Isn’t that wonderful? AIG tells us:

Originally, contracts were arranged to have Ham talk about the ideas of Charles Darwin in UCO’s Constitution Hall. But strong objections from members of a campus LGBTQ group pushed the UCO student body president to cancel the talk, despite a speaking invitation that came from the student government. Ham was told on January 27 that he was no longer welcome, but that changed today with the invitation from President Betz.

It’s interesting to note that despite all the fuss ol’ Hambo made about his Constitutional rights being violated, the university itself didn’t invite him, nor did it un-invite him That had been done by a student organization. But due to all the publicity the incident caused, the university president felt that the proper thing to do was to officially invite him to speak.

And although Hambo will trumpet this — and his speech — as a glorious triumph for creationism, it’s all relatively trivial. Those who attend his lecture will mostly be droolers, and they’ll cheer his wisdom. If any rational students attend, they’ll quietly snicker. All in all, it’s a fuss over nothing.

Copyright © 2018. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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25 responses to “Hambo Re-Invited to the the U. of Central Oklahoma

  1. I would say that Hamy has shown st00pid when he says it was a violation of free speech, but he knows there was no violation, he is just a bold faced LIAR4jesus!

  2. Michael Fugate

    Let’s welcome Ken Ham a person known for picking and choosing what science to accept based on his very idiosyncratic interpretation of the Bible…
    Please keep in mind that almost nothing Mr. Ham says about either science or Christianity is likely to be supported by any evidence…
    Let’s give a round of applause for an individual who believes the Flintstones cartoon series is supported by both science and the Bible…

  3. Michael Sternberg

    Meanwhile, over at the Discovery Institute, they are looking for a Director of Finance whose duties include:
    “Provide President and Finance Committee with twice a month temperature checks”
    Why? Who knows?

  4. And the Flintstones along with Alley Oop were actually documentaries.

  5. I’m glad they reinstated the invite. No one should be censored, including the Hamster. Protest and mockery are how you deal with creationists.

  6. UCO, to its credit, is regarding the fuss as a teachable moment. “The university will also present sessions March 5 on the First Amendment and free speech, and a session on the process of scientific inquiry and evolution the following day, UCO President Don Petz told the campus Thursday.” http://www.kentucky.com/news/state/article200314879.html

  7. Thanks for the link, Glenn.

  8. Free speech is a government thing. This has nothing to do with free speech. He already spews his damaging drivel in lots of places. Given the lying, thieveing, dishonest, science-hating, education-hating nature of this pathetic excuse for a hominid, no one should ever give him a platform for spewing his nonsensical, Bronze Age sludge. Deep breath. Better.

  9. JSJ, yes, free speech in a government thing, but it should also be paramount on campus. There are no views so odious or bizarre that they should be banned. A platform does not legitimize his views, making them public allows for public mockery and I hope the rational students of UCO make Hammy feel like the pathetic bozo he is.

    Apologies to clowns everywhere.

  10. How often does a rat pay you to let it walk into the lab? Are they just parachuting in these days? With prepaid visa cards taped to them?

    Anything that will be said by Ken.H has already been said before. This a chance for the next generation to put some rat brain on glass and learn something. I can’t imagine a valid rational reason to deny the next generation of people who are capable of doing the heavy lifting the chance to do so. Is that not the core of the Arts and Sciences?

    I am however quite impressed by the rush of people suggesting ways of making resources available to the student body. Resources that could provide a more insightful interpretation of Ham’s words and delivery. Possibly get him to run a nice maze before the top comes off?

    It’s good to see that emotion and cynicism hasn’t entirely overrun the education system.

  11. Michael Fugate

    It would be nice if they also included a forum on Christianity and interpreting the Bible. Ham is neither a scientist nor a theologian and it shows.

  12. Theodore Lawry

    In the other recent campus fights over unpopular speakers, I don’t remember another case where the university stepped in to offer the speaker a venue. Just shows how terribly persecuted creationists are!

  13. @Michael Fugate
    I have heard fundamentalists express low opinions of theology.

  14. Michael Fugate

    I am not surprised; they know less about it than science.

  15. It is only to be hoped that, even as we speak, an opposition is organising and preparing. It is tedious and onerous to research the mental sludge that forms the intellect of Ken Ham, but it must be done if he is to be opposed. His exiguous academic qualifications must be exposed, but above all his contra-intellectual notions must be demolished. “Were you there?”, “observational” versus “historical” science, the idea that natural laws can change over time, all the rest. His “Ark” has to be realified, if I may use such an expression.

    Maybe Ham will be chary enough not to allow a Q&A, but something can be made of that. If he isn’t, questions can be asked that expose him:

    Thus: “Mr Ham, is it true that your Ark is held together with steel bolts, trusses and plates, and is bedded on concrete pilings? Why did you not use the materials specified in the Scripture?” “What would happen to your Ark, steel fixings and all, if it were afloat on a stormy sea?” “Have you calculated the energy released by the influx of water of the Flood? Perhaps some physics students here would care to follow your calculations…” Many other questions could be prepared on the Ark and the flood alone.

    What about: “Mr Ham, can you provide a succinct description of the Theory of Evolution, so we know exactly what you’re against? How about a brief explanation of radiometric dating techniques and their sources of error? Have you ever heard of the reservoir effect? Can you explain it?”

    “Mr Ham, if you were to hear a crash of glass from your living room, walk in there to find the front window broken, and a baseball among shards of glass on the carpet. Looking through the broken window, you see half a dozen children in the vacant lot across the street, one holding a baseball bat, one with a catcher’s mitt, all staring across the road at you. Could you work out what has happened, or would you reason that since you were not there and could not see, it can’t be known?”

    And so on.

  16. “internationally renowned”
    Lovely American chauvinism. Even Dutch creacrappers hardly refer to him.

    “All in all, it’s a fuss over nothing.”
    Except that no doubt Ol’Hambo will use it to give his crap “scientific” credibility. PaulS likes wishful thinking – the UoCO totally provides a platform “to teach the controversy” where there isn’t one. Dean falls for another common fallacy. It’s easier, quicker and more efiicient to learn about creacrap by visiting the site of Ol’Hambo, AIG than to visit a lecture by him.
    President Betz made the wrong decision. Also public money will be used to facilitate creacrap propanda. However it would be censorship indeed if some higher authority corrected Betz.
    Once again I must point out the big mistake that founds this error and the views of the self declared and totally misplaced free speech defenders. They think they can beat creacrap. They can’t. Nobody can. Reason hasn’t taken down nazism and marxism; it can’t take down creacrap either.

  17. @Dave Luckett
    Good questions, and one can think of hundreds more. I would simply ask him how the two kangaroos made it to Australia. But it won’t make a difference. These guys either deny reality, e.g. “There are no intermediate fossils”, or they come up with a supernatural explanation.
    In the end it is the one who keeps his cool who will win in the eyes of the audience. And that’s usually not the science guy.

  18. There is no “supernatural explanation”.
    At best, there is a “gap” in natural explanation.
    Let it be pointed out that there is a gap between design and realization.

  19. mnbo, Your interpretation is incorrect. A student organization invited Hammy to speak, not UCO or any UCO official. UCO is not legitimizing Hammy views any more than they would had they invited Carrot Top.

    An invitation was extended to Hammy by a student group and whatever those views are, creacrap, holocaust denial, BDS or brexit doesn’t matter. The invitation doesn’t mean those views are support by UCO.

    President Betz made the correct decision, a group on campus trying to deplatform a speaker and he rightly upheld everyone’s rights to speak and be heard.

    If the students of UCO can’t refute the Hamster’s views, we’ve failed in our education and censoring Hammy wont fix that.

  20. I recall, when I was in college, a speaker (don’t recall his name) came and was talking about reincarnation and palmistry. I had no doubt of his sincerity about his beliefs, but didn’t find his spiel the least bit compelling. If a crackpot like this can speak surely there is room for Hambo. Not only that college students are actually a lot less likely to buy what he’s selling.

  21. I think the new arrangement is correct given the current debates about campus freedom of speech, etc. I am told by UCO faculty that the President made the change after parents withdrew and offered to withdraw their children when the visit was cancelled. The cost will be paid by donations made to the President’s donated funds and not from normal budgeted costs. The President has been notified by several faculty members of the NCSE offer to assist. I discussed this last night at dinner with the Dean of Math and Science and several Biology Department faculty as well. Hopefully this will become a win for science.

  22. vhutchison says: “Hopefully this will become a win for science.”

    Science is doing fine. The key here is to prevent this thing from being a win for Hambo and creationism. That means, for example: (1) doing nothing that could generate controversy or publicity; and (2) no credible faculty people engage the guy in a debate.

  23. Agree. Debate with Ham not a good idea. But, appropriate comments during the discussion can provide good material to counter the garbage Ham will use. In my opinion debate with creationists and their ilk is never a good practice.

  24. The fallacy of direct observation? Did a stick get lodged in the tiller at some point?

    Cheers

  25. AiG would have us believe they are in favour of free speech:
    http://www.forums.bcseweb.org.uk/viewtopic.php?f=18&t=2967&start=1755 (latest post)