little green footballs

Dear Diary: Today I Read an Article Defending People Who Think the Earth Is Flat

Sat, Jan 30, 2016 at 7:33:53 pm

When I posted the video of Neil deGrasse Tyson's appearance on The Nightly Show earlier today, in which he definitively slapped down the idea that's been debunked for more than two millennia that the Earth is flat, I never thought I'd be reading an article at a major online publication defending people who promote this Stone Age idea -- the very same night.

Aristotle debunked this foolish nonsense in the fourth century B.C., but here we are again: In Defense of Flat Earthers - The Atlantic.

Writer Lizzie Wade says she's not actually trying to give credence to the flat Earth craziness, she's just praising the people who spread it:

B.o.B’s Twitter crusade illuminates the best qualities of outsider physics: its skepticism, its curiosity, and its fierce desire to make sense of a confusing world in a rigorous way. These same values lie at the heart of mainstream science, too. They are what make science special. They are what make science science.

B.o.B is also, by the way, a Holocaust denier and a virulent antisemite. Are these values also part of mainstream science?

And this horrible, misguided article has comments. Yes, I did read the comments. Here are some of them.

A lot of people, including myself, who claim the earth is flat came to it reluctantly, but they were convinced by doing the math and geometry and looking at the observable phenomena. For hundreds of years people believed the earth was a globe without any proof, and now all the "proof" is coming from one government organization - NASA. Before you dismiss it, have a look at this summary. Then do your own math and observations with an open mind. Ask questions. Trust your own eyes. Think for yourself.

[...]

I like this article, it shows tolerance for things you know are wrong in a world filled with intolerance of others. The issue I have with man made climate change is that there's too little real, actual evidence to back anything up. Pretty much computer models which are nowhere near accurate. Claiming the science is settled doesn't exactly help the cause either, seeing as this kind of statement is very anti scientific. The attitude towards this "political" science is very suspect, and does not even come close to passing the baloney test. Let's see if my fellow commenters are capable of tolerance for something they claim to know to be false.

[...]

The fact that globalists - including DGT - rely on ad hominem attacks against B.o.B's character, his education, background etc shows they have no valid argument. Not surprising, as there really is NO valid argument to defend the globe theory - an appeal to history and tradition do not constitute 'valid arguments' or Flat-Earthers would be continuously pointing out the Pyramids of Giza and Chichen Itza, and the ancient ruins of Machu Pichu, Teotihuacan, etc etc all designed and built by 'dumbass, uneducated' Flat Earthers....

[...]

As I've learned to distrust the government more and more these past few years, I looked into this Flat Earth a bit and quite honestly, they have some good points to consider.

[...]

Earth is flat 100%. Nasa fakes everything. Lookup My Perspective on YouTube, he has tons of proof it's flat.

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I don't expect you guys to look into it because many are content with believing what they are told. Many watch SPACEX land their rocket and think way to go, awesome! Others think... didn't we go to the moon, land a rocket, then re-fired it and it docked with the spacecraft and returned home WITH HUMANS INSIDE 50 years ago? So, while you may think you are intellectuals, you also think we went to the moon. So many people don't realize what is crazier... knowing the earth is flat or knowing that they are spinning 1000 mph, going 66,000 mph around a 93 million mile sun while in our 584 million mile yearly orbit. So, you can think your smart all you want. Do you know how to figure the curve from Hawaii to California? It is 8" x distance squared. Do the math and then go try to measure the 789 foot curvature. Oh, my mistake... it is 789 MILES OF CURVE. MILES! Sorry guys, look into it... we were all lied to. Water is level... no in 789 mile high humps.

[...]

Love your article.
In highs chool we had a history teacher and in fact he used this exact example of all us kids believing the earth is round just because we were told.

Unfortunately there was a nerd in the class who came up with a quick estimate of the earths radius based on some snapshots he had of sailboats. Ruined everything.

Someone at The Atlantic really should have stepped in before this awful piece went live.

UPDATE at 1/30/16 7:52:46 pm by Charles Johnson

Science correspondent Lizzie Wade tweets:

It’s not my job to promote science or encourage people to become scientists. https://t.co/lepZqYmMH2

— Lizzie Wade (@lizzie_wade) January 28, 2016