Religion Today Daily Headlines - August 28, 2012

Religion Today Daily Headlines - August 28, 2012

Daily briefs of the top news stories impacting Christians around the world.

In today's edition:

  • 'The American Bible Challenge' Debuts as GSN's Most-Viewed Program of All Time
  • Bill Nye the Science Guy Slams Creationism
  • Texas Fraud Suit Against Planned Parenthood Moves Forward
  • Rick Warren Cancels Presidential Forum with Mixed Explanations as to Why


'The American Bible Challenge' Debuts as GSN's Most-Viewed Program of All Time

Thursday night's premiere of the Game Show Network's new series "The American Bible Challenge," hosted by comedian Jeff Foxworthy, was a mega-hit -- debuting as the No. 1 program ever on GSN. "The American Bible Challenge" outperformed the previous record by more than half a million viewers and ranked among the top five cable networks in total viewers, women ages 25 to 54, and viewers ages 25 to 54 in its time period. "The best-selling book of all time is now GSN's most-viewed program of all time, which proves that consumers are yearning for fun, family-friendly entertainment," said Amy Introcaso-DavisGSN's executive vice president of programming and development. "We are incredibly proud of this show and are happy that it connected with so many viewers." The Bible-trivia-based show, which airs Thursday nights at 8 p.m./7 p.m. Central, is a first for mainstream television.

Bill Nye the Science Guy Slams Creationism

Famed TV scientist Bill Nye, a mechanical engineer best known for his program "Bill Nye the Science Guy," slammed creationism in a new online video posted last Thursday titled "Creationism Is Not Appropriate For Children," CNN reports. The video, which went viral over the weekend and had been viewed more than 1,100,000 times by Monday afternoon, opens with Nye stating, "Denial of evolution is unique to the United States ... [and] when you have a portion of the population that doesn't believe in it, it holds everyone back [from scientific innovation]." Nye goes on to say: "Your world becomes fantastically complicated if you don't believe in evolution. ... I say to the grown-ups, if you want to deny evolution and live in your world ... that's completely inconsistent with everything we observe in the universe, that's fine, but don't make your kids do it because we need them. We need scientifically literate voters and taxpayers for the future. We need ... engineers that can build stuff, solve problems. ... You know, in another couple of centuries that worldview ... just won't exist. There's no evidence for it." According to the Gallup Poll's most recent findings on Americans' views on creation and evolution -- released in June -- 46 percent believe in creationism, 32 percent believe in evolution guided by God and 15 percent believe in atheistic evolution. During the 30 years Gallup has conducted the survey, creationism has remained by far the most popular answer.

Texas Fraud Suit Against Planned Parenthood Moves Forward

The American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ) is proceeding with a lawsuit saying Planned Parenthood affiliates in Texas defrauded taxpayers, after a federal judge dismissed the abortion seller's plea to dismiss the case in early August, WORLD News Service reports. The court said there was enough evidence that Planned Parenthood may have made false claims for reimbursement under government programs for unnecessary procedures and services never provided to proceed with the case. According to the ACLJ: "This is a major victory, as this case to hold Planned Parenthood accountable moves forward to trail. At stake are literally hundreds of millions of dollars, and it is a case that could have a substantial impact on one of Planned Parenthood's largest affiliates in Texas." The ACLJ is representing Planned Parenthood employee Karen Reynolds in the suit, which was filed August 10. Reynolds, who worked as a health center assistant at the Planned Parenthood clinic in Lufkin from October 1999 through February 2009, alleges that during that time, corporate directors instructed employees to "maximize revenues by increasing 'pay-per-visits' for patients who were eligible for medical services charged to government programs," including Medicaid.

Rick Warren Cancels Presidential Forum with Mixed Explanations as to Why

Megachurch pastor Rick Warren called off plans for a presidential forum that he said was scheduled to include both major party candidates, but there are conflicting accounts as to why the event was canceled, CNN reports. Warren told the Orange County Register he was canceling his "civil forum" because "it would be hypocritical to pretend civility for one evening only to have the name-calling return the next day," but according to an anonymous Democratic strategist, the event was canceled because of a lack of interest from both President Barack Obama's and Mitt Romney's campaigns. A source close to the Romney campaign said the Republican candidate hadn't planned on attending Warren's event but offered to do a video; however, a source close to Warren disputed the offer of a video. During the 2008 election, Warren hosted Obama and Republican candidate John McCain at his Saddleback Church in Southern California in front of 5,000 people and a nationally televised audience, in what he called Saddleback Civil Forum on the Presidency.

Publication date: August 28, 2012