Hambo Is Upset about Gender Choice

Things are a bit strange today at the blog of Ken Ham (ol’ Hambo) — the ayatollah of Appalachia, the world’s holiest man who knows more about religion and science than everyone else. Instead of focusing on creationism and the topics we like — young Earth, six-day creation, Noah’s Ark, etc. — ol’ Hambo is once again blogging about “social issues.” Today his topic is unconventional gender choices.

The news he reports is surprising to us, so it must be a real shock to ol’ Hambo. The title of his post is 24% of Evangelicals Agree “Gender Identity Is a Matter of Choice”.

We wouldn’t have predicted that, but we don’t really care. As we’ve said before, the only private life we’re interested in is our own, and we don’t care what other people do — as long as it’s done privately with consenting adults. But Hambo does care what other people are doing. Here are some excerpts from his post, with bold font added by us for emphasis, and occasional Curmudgeonly interjections that look [like this]:

According to a recent survey [link omitted], 24% of so-called evangelical Christians in the U.S. agree “gender identity is a matter of choice.” Of this same group, 20% disagree that “sex outside of traditional marriage is a sin” and 18% agree with this statement, “the Bible’s condemnation of homosexual behavior doesn’t apply today” (and 10% aren’t sure!).

Hambo’s link was to the same survey mentioned in our earlier post: Are These Two News Items Related? — the one about beliefs of evangelicals. It still stuns him. He says:

What does this survey tell us? Well, apparently Christians are very confused when it comes to sexuality and biblical morality! [Gasp!] So many people in our churches are biblically illiterate!

People in churches are biblically illiterate? Maybe some are, but we think the people who visit Hambo’s tourist attractions are literally illiterate. Anyway, he tells us:

We need to raise a generation of believers who know how to think biblically — who understand God’s Word as the foundation for their thinking in every area.

Hambo said “every area.” That means you’re not supposed to think about anything in a non-biblical context. He continues:

And we want to help pastors, Christian leaders, and parents with practical answers at our upcoming Answers for Pastors and Leaders conference [Link omitted!] (open to everyone), October 6–8, 2020, at the Ark Encounter, south of Cincinnati.

Sounds like a thrilling event! Let’s read on:

If you are unable to make it to this event in person, we will be streaming the conference on our new online video platform, Answers TV. [Link omitted!] These sessions will be powerful — they are a must watch! [Ooooooooooooh! Powerful!]

The next few paragraphs are about the conference, and we’re going to let you to read that stuff without us if you care to do so. There’s nothing else in Hambo’s post, so that’s it — we’re outta here!

Copyright © 2020. The Sensuous Curmudgeon. All rights reserved.

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22 responses to “Hambo Is Upset about Gender Choice

  1. “believers who know how to think biblically”
    That’s Hambospeak for “think how I prescribe to think”.

  2. Hambo disparagingly references

    –24% of so-called evangelical Christians in the U.S.–

    I take it, we are thereby to accept that, unlike these soi disant Christians, Hambo and his ilk are TRVE Christians…

  3. I’m not sure about what it means to say that gender identity being an option. In the good old days, way back when, we weren’t asked about whether we wanted to be cis.

  4. TomS notes

    I’m not sure about what it means to say that gender identity being an option.

    Me neither.

    Fundamentalists don’t seem to see the paradox, not just in their claim that ‘bad’ choices result from our ‘free will’ but ‘good choices’ are directed by a Deity, but even more oddly: if the Deity has foreknowledge of all things, then we mere mortals cannot have ‘free will’

  5. Michael Fugate

    People are really confused by these things. Do they really believe people with gender dysphoria choose to have it? Like they are picking an ice cream flavor or a shirt style? The same goes for sexual orientation. Did Ham choose to be straight or cis? If you didn’t choose your gender or sexual orientation, then why would you think someone else did? Given human variation for every phenotypic trait, why wouldn’t we expect it for sexual orientation and gender. The presence of a Y chromosome alone doesn’t determine a single human phenotype. Which other genes does Ham think are 100% deterministic for phenotype?

  6. Well we now know that 24% of eviljellies would loose an IQ test to a box of rocks. I did not realize the number was so low, I would have guessed about 100%.

  7. After my confederacy snit I am back at the waters of the enlightened enjoying some creationism snark. Why ? Because the backsplash tile grouter refinishing our kitchen , a pretty out there allow it turns out , foul d out I was an oil and gas geologist and began telling me about Ken Hovind and how abused he had been. EGAD !!!!!! They’re in my kitchen now…Had I not been a fan of this blog, I would have had to question him further. BUT, as it was I simply said , “Kens a bad scientist” and “he lets his religious beliefs effect his understanding of established science”. Then I culminated with, geologists find the oil and gas that is used to create motor oil and gasoline.” “Whats Ken do” This seemed to register, however fleetingly on my opponents brain housing assembly cognitive recognition module.
    So , are the confederate s back in the attic ?

  8. Magalonyx, allow me to don my apologist’s hat and answer that: God knows all things, including all possible outcomes of every action, all effects of all causes. We cannot say what the Universe (or Universes) must look like to Him, but it must be somewhat akin to a shifting kaleidoscope, only operating in an infinite number of dimensions, all of which He perceives as a single gestalt.

    Some of the outcomes He foresees from our actions are unacceptable to Him, for reasons of His own, and He acts to vary or prevent them, or to cause an action as He wills. Nearly always these interventions are merely slightly variant operations of chance, not to be distinguished from natural events; but very occasionally, God might actually abrogate natural law. Such an intervention is called a miracle.

    Thus, it is possible to accommodate both human free will and divine omniscience, omnipotence and providence. Indeed, we find in that an explanation for why humans have free will: it is to afford God the moment to moment control of His Creation, rather than that it should be eternally fixed and changeless. Or, to put it unkindly, it is to give the Old Boy something to do.

  9. Michael Fugate: The problem with “gender dysphoria” is that many transgender activists are offended by the expression, which appears to refer to some kind of pathological psychiatric condition. I have no wish whatsoever to offend them. To them, their gender IS a matter of their free choice, and is FOR THEM a completely personal and on-going decision. Perhaps that is not true for others, whose gender is shackled to their biological sex, but it is true for them. Well, it is certainly not true for me. But what would I know about it? And do I really think that everyone must be like me? Give me credit for better than that.

    Yet nevertheless it is possible to accept a working arrangement as a practical expedient without endorsing the principle. I believe that “gender dysphoria” is in fact a psychiatric condition, and that those who suffer from it are disadvantaged. I believe that there is no effective treatment; certainly that no treatment whatsoever should be attempted without the full informed and willing consent of the sufferer. It remains to behave in a civilised and decent way towards them, which includes an acceptance and validation of their decisions.

    A Christian might respond that it is required of all of us that we take up our own crosses, and it is not for us to denigrate those who bear a different and perhaps heavier cross than ours. Ken Ham is not that kind of Christian. In fact, I would say that he’s no kind of Christian at all; at least, he’s no follower of Christ. Jesus knew his kind well, though.

  10. @Dave Luckett
    Agreed.

  11. @DaveL: “it is possible to accommodate both human free will and divine omniscience, omnipotence and providence.”
    Correct – it is omnivolence that gives the biggest problem. The easiest problem to that one is polytheism, which I of course equally reject. So I don’t find it an attractive strategy to argue against theism starting with a definition of god(s). The apologist only has to accept a slightly different definition and I’m left with empty hands.

    “he’s no follower of Christ”
    No matter how sympathetic this idea is to me I think the judgmental aspect objectionable. It’s not up to me to judge who is and who is not a (true) follower of Jesus, who does and who does not seriously attempt to practice his teachings. We will fully agree that Ol’Hambo is a despisable hypocrite, who suffers from several deadly sins he claims to combat (vanity being the most prominent one). As this is an integral part of the christian view of human beings (due to Original Sin) it does not disqualify him as a christian.
    The best, but hardly perfect criterium probably is the question whether somebody puts his/her fate in Jesus’ hands. I don’t see any reason to doubt that Ol’Hambo does, in stark contrast with me.

  12. The concept of Original Sin provides an excellent tool to pester creationists. It goes something like this.

    (Creationist makes a claim about evolution)
    Me: you’re a liar.
    Creationist: such an outrageous insult! I’m not!
    Me: you’re a christian.
    Creationist: yes.
    Me: that means that you admit you’re a sinner.
    Creationist: we humans all are sinners.
    Me: lying is a sin too, so you lying is one of the sins you commit. That means you’re a liar. I have no reason at all to trust anything you say. In fact several sources on internet (especially TalkOrigins) have documented many creationist lies. If you claim that you’re an exception you not only commit the sin of lying but also of vanity.
    If you take your own belief system seriously you have to accept this. If you don’t accept this I don’t have any reason to take you seriously.

  13. @FramkB
    In re accurate information about the natural world from creationists.
    If the information is the product of intelligent design, then there is no reason to believe that it is accurate. We do not know the purpose of the design. (Seee the Evolutionary Argument Against Naturalism for the details.)
    If we rely on the Bible as being the source of the information, then we know that we do not deserve accurate information. (It is not murder if we are killed, it is not theft if we are deprived of poetry, etc., so it is not lying if we get inaccurate information.)

  14. Charley Horse X

    Heteros in the past and those in the present such as Kim, Trump and Putin are much more dangerous to our safety, freedoms and world peace than any non-heteros that I know of. But like Trump….the imported Ham goes after the low hanging fruit….the elective ignorant.

  15. @ Dave Luckett Thanks for that; hope your foray into apologetics was only temporary.

    You help illuminate the next problem that arises

    Some of the outcomes He foresees from our actions are unacceptable to Him, for reasons of His own, and He acts to vary or prevent them, or to cause an action as He wills.

    Which means that among those outcomes of human actions such as the Holocaust were acceptable to Him; had they been unacceptable, He would have acted to prevent them?

    As you can see, I wouldn’t make it as a true believer in anything beyond the Cosmic Aardvark.

    And: my belief in Braterman’s Unicorn is not a matter of faith, it is based on unimpeachable eye-witness testimony

  16. Megalonyx: Yes, precisely. It is axiomatic: if the holocaust had been unacceptable to God, it could not have happened. So it devolves into the problem of evil. How could a good God permit monumental atrocity? To allow free will to operate? What kind of insane value system is that?

    It is at this point that the believers shrug and essentially retreat into the fortress of incomprehension. To know why God’s will is as it is requires the same omniscience as God has. Obviously, therefore, we not only don’t know, we can’t know. All we can say of it is, “Thy Will be done”.

    Yes, well. Perhaps we might add a rider, “but go easy, eh?”

  17. Michael Fugate

    And don’t even consider what is claimed to be “property” in the Ten Commandments.

  18. @Dave Luckett
    The issue of concern to those who accet scientific explanation is this: “thy will be done” is not in competition with expianation.
    Even if someone can prove without doubt that there is no naturalistic explanation for X, “thy will be done” is not available as an explanation.
    That is not a fault of “thy will be done”.

  19. I have always wanted to ask whether folks like Ham accept that harmaphrodites, XYY and YYX individuals exist. If these obvious genetic patterns exist, why not more subtle patterns that relate to gender.

  20. @FrankB, what’s interesting to me, and also frustrating, is the way that this variety of Christian will say in one breath that scientists can’t presume that evolution is the key to life because they lack knowledge, and then in the next breath say that gender identity is set at birth and (poorly) use the science of genetics to justify it.

  21. @JimRoberts
    And when others mis-use science for promoting other ideologies, that is blamed on science!

  22. Michael Fugate

    NAS and NAM Presidents Alarmed By Political Interference in Science Amid Pandemic

    As advisers to the nation on all matters of science, medicine, and public health, we are compelled to underscore the value of science-based decision-making at all levels of government. Our nation is at a critical time in the course of the COVID-19 pandemic with important decisions ahead of us, especially concerning the efficacy and safety of vaccines. Policymaking must be informed by the best available evidence without it being distorted, concealed, or otherwise deliberately miscommunicated. We find ongoing reports and incidents of the politicization of science, particularly the overriding of evidence and advice from public health officials and derision of government scientists, to be alarming. It undermines the credibility of public health agencies and the public’s confidence in them when we need it most. Ending the pandemic will require decision-making that is not only based on science but also sufficiently transparent to ensure public trust in, and adherence to, sound public-health instructions. Any efforts to discredit the best science and scientists threaten the health and welfare of us all.

    Marcia McNutt
    President, National Academy of Sciences

    Victor J. Dzau
    President, National Academy of Medicine