My writing here mostly uses the harm principle/individual rights/tolerance frameworks. Since there’s no hard evidence creationist beliefs cause actual harm, we should default to respecting the right of individuals to live their lives as they best see fit. Tolerance is a virtue. I use these frameworks not only because I believe these arguments, but because it’s one I think most of my readers can identify with.
Here’s another lens that might be helpful. Imagine we produce data showing that in the aggregate belief in creationism correlates with (just to pick one) poor mathematical reasoning. How should we respond to this evidence? How should it affect what we think of individual creationists? What about the language used when discussing them as a group?
Consider the debates surrounding gender and science ability or race and crime. When it comes to these issues, liberal Americans (i.e. my social circle) relentlessly insist that individuals can’t be judged by group averages. We often ruthlessly question the data itself. We look at historical context. We recognize the pernicious impact of sloppy language and crude generalizations, and we angrily denounce them. We caution against basing laws or policy on these data.
And you know what? That’s how we should respond! I’m very happy we do so. If we value consistency, shouldn’t we at least try to adopt the same approach with respect to creationists? Why don’t we?