Carbon 14 Idiocy

One day, I was mousing through the net and in a flash of boredom I wandered to the CNN comment boards thinking I might catch some some good LOL. Then one comment caught my eye; one that baited me into a swift crushing blow. It’s times like these that I’m the Human Torch. “FLAME ON.”

The story in question was titled “Did Earth get zapped in the eighth century?” Horrible headline, but the author posted recent findings about a cosmic collision that may have resulted in a ‘short-duration gamma-ray burst’ that bathed Earth’s surface with radiation back in the 8th century. The finding could help explain why researchers find high levels of carbon-14 and beryllium-10 in trees that were cut down during that time. Not exactly front page headliner stuff, but it’s interesting to me.

Most comments that followed were the usual trollish nonsense, but one comment in particular put the flame in my eye. First, let me explain that I loathe nitwits out there who cite “evidence” that carbon 14 tests are so inadequate that the age estimation of dinosaurs (for instance) might be 70 million years or only 6,000 years – who knows <shrug>. This rationale has deeper roots that branch out from a Christian heresy that young Earth Creationism is absolute (e.g., you are not a Christian unless you believe this bullshit wholeheartedly). To the Christian who might stumble on this post – you read correctly. Young Earth Creationism is not biblical, its teaching is false, therefore it is heresy.

Back to the poster:

hubrisdenied: this right here is why i ALWAYS HATED CARBON DATING……its such a huge assumption to say we know for sure what carbon 14 levels were 50 years ago…..let alone millions…

Little did Mr Hubris realize that his hubris jerked me into the conversation.

superbole: What in the friggin world does this event have to do with the decay rate of carbon? Are you a complete moron or are you doing this to get attention?

Actually, what I wanted to say was that unlike YOUR GOD, atoms and the speed of light do not lie. If you want to believe that YOUR deity has TOLD you that the Earth is only 6,000 years old, fine. Don’t use your faith to invalidate a physical mechanical fact. In other words, get the hell out of my face with your stupid comment! But I simplified.

superbole: NOTE – carbon-14 dating is only accurate up to within 50,000 years (or so), so IF there were multiple radiation events, then we’d see a distortion in the 14C baseline – which, by the way, we do; that’s why the disclaimer. BUT… but… the friggin dinosaurs in your museum are still between 60 to 200 million years old. OKAY??

To whit, a passersby added this gem:

are122: There are many dinosaurs in D.C. much younger than that.

Yah. I admit it. I was ready to rip are122‘s head off when a cooler head popped up between my shoulders and said… “yo dude, chill.”

superbole: lol… i was like, “wft? where?” then… i had to laugh. “oh… THOSE dinosaurs

No question about it… this is idiocy at its finest. But dammit… don’t mess with my Carbon 14!