Our title may seem strange, but when you blog about creationists, strangeness is what should be expected. We found this at the website of Answers in Genesis (AIG), the creationist ministry of Ken Ham (ol’ Hambo) — the ayatollah of Appalachia. He’s the world’s holiest man who knows more about religion and science than everyone else.
Their title is COVID-19 and the Flat Earth. It was written by ol’ Hambo’s creationist astronomer, Dr. Danny Faulkner. Here’s AIG’s biographical information about Danny. They say he taught physics and astronomy until he joined AIG. His undergraduate degree is from Bob Jones University.
And here’s the listing for Danny’s book at Amazon: Falling Flat: A Refutation of Flat Earth Claims. The publisher is Master Books. Their website brags that they’re “the exclusive publisher for Ken Ham, the founder and CEO of Answers in Genesis, the Creation Museum, and the Ark Encounter.”
We know you’re eager to see what Danny has for us today, so we’ll get right to it. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us for emphasis, and occasional Curmudgeonly interjections that look [like this]:
If you look at the title of this blog, you may wonder what COVID-19 has to do with the flat-earth movement. I’ve been studying and reporting on the flat-earth movement for more than four years. One of the things that I’ve discovered is that flat-earthers are very much into conspiracies. [Shocking!] … Consequently, I’ve been curious as to what flat-earthers think about COVID-19, so I’ve been monitoring flat-earth websites and YouTube channels for weeks.
That’s a good activity for a creation scientist. Danny says:
One of the things that I’ve learned from my study about people who think the earth is flat is that they are united by only two things, [first,] that the earth is flat and [second,] that there must be a conspiracy promoting the earth is a globe. Beyond that, there is much diversity among flat-earthers.
Brilliant analysis. Hey — it’s probably just a coincidence, but we’ve noticed that here are two things that unite creationists. One is a preference for Dark Ages thinking, and the other is a powerful tendency to drool. But let’s stay with Danny’s analysis of flat-earthers. He tells us about their diversity:
There are theological differences, from what appear to be conservative Christians to New Agers. There are differences involving details of what the flat-earth model ought to be. Then there are differences in personality and style. Some of the differences in opinion can get quite heated, with some people in the flat-earth movement condemning others as sell outs, shills, or controlled opposition. This infighting can get vicious. Therefore, perhaps I shouldn’t have been surprised by the diversity of responses to COVID-19 among flat-earthers, but I was.
Now Danny tells us about their responses to COVID-19:
Some flat-earthers readily accepted the two most common conspiracy theories about COVID-19 making the rounds. One of those two theories is that the entire thing is a hoax, with no one really getting sick from a new illness. [Amazing!] The other common conspiracy theory is that people are getting sick, but the illness is not caused by a coronavirus but by 5G networks [What?], which recently began rollout around the world.
5G networks? What are they? According to Wikipedia, 5G “is the fifth generation of wireless communications technologies supporting cellular data networks. 5G communication requires the use of communications devices (mostly mobile phones) designed to support the technology.” Where is Danny going with this? Oh, wait. In a section titled “Political opposition,” Wikipedia says:
It has been alleged that the United States via the FBI, the UK via GCHQ and other intelligence agencies have sought to adjust 5G standards through 3GPP in order to allow as much metadata as possible to be collected for mass surveillance purposes.
This has potential to get interesting. Danny continues:
Some flat-earthers have managed to combine these two conspiracy theories into one, with the conspiracy being the coverup and blame shifting so that the masses don’t demand the dismantling of 5G networks. Why are the 5G networks so important to THE conspiracy? Why, 5G must be essential to further expand government control. This is ironic because, since the flat-earth movement has been a phenomenon almost entirely driven by the internet, the expansion of 5G will facilitate the promulgation of flat-earth nonsense.
Isn’t it great when a creationist refers to the flat-earth belief as “nonsense”? Let’s read on:
A more serious aspect of this embrace of COVID-19 conspiracy theories is that some flat-earthers deny the germ theory of disease. [Wow!] They argue that viruses don’t cause disease at all.
Danny’s paragraph describing that belief is huge, and it ends with this: “Unlike the notion the earth is flat, this thinking can kill people.” You can click over there to read the details, if you like,, but we’re moving on. Here’s another excerpt:
Where is the diversity among flat-earthers? I am surprised at the number of prominent flat-earthers who have not mentioned or hardly mention COVID-19. They usually have endorsed conspiracy theories about all sorts of things, but especially huge stories, such as 9/11. COVID-19 is the largest story since 9/11, and certainly is the biggest event since the rise of the 21st century flat-earth movement about five years ago, so their silence is obvious.
Well, it’s obvious to Danny. Here’s more:
One notable exception is Robbie Davidson, who organized and ran the Flat Earth International Conferences that I attended in conducting my research about the flat-earth movement. Robbie’s Celebrate Truth channel on YouTube recently has featured programs that appear to agree that COVID-19 is a real threat and don’t mention conspiracies. His approach is that COVID-19 might be the beginning of end-times apocalyptic events. [Brilliant!] He has been very clear that COVID-19 could be part of God’s judgement on the world. That wouldn’t make sense if COVID-19 were a hoax or a satanic conspiracy. Obviously, Robbie’s approach to COVID-19 is very different from the reaction of many other flat-earthers. And it is more responsible.
Right! What could be more responsible than claiming the End of the World is coming? Danny finishes with this:
So, the response of flat-earthers to COVID-19 runs the gamut from hoax, to large conspiracy, to acceptance that it is a real threat and God’s judgement on the world, to what amounts to indifference. As I said earlier, this surprises me. But then, as I’ve noted before, there is far more diversity among flat-earthers than first meets the eye. Perhaps I ought not to be so surprised after all.
The one thing we don’t understand is why creationists like Danny aren’t also flat-earthers. After all, the bible clearly says The Earth Is Flat! Maybe he should work on that.
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