Talk:Neil deGrasse Tyson

From RationalWiki
Jump to: navigation, search
Icon sociology.svg This article contains information about one or more living persons.

Articles about living people must be handled carefully, because they are more open to legal threats.
Reference any contentious allegations solidly; unreferenced allegations should be removed.
If legal threats are raised on this page, please direct the potential litigant to RationalWiki:Legal FAQ; do not interact with them.

Bachelor of the Arts in physics[edit]

Really? A BA in physics? not a B.Sc.? PintOfStout Talk Do you think expletives make you look intelligent? I dunno. Do you think being self righteous makes you look like a prick? 05:04, 3 January 2012 (UTC)

Don't look at me, I only wrote the message! From what I've heard, Harvard only does a BS for engineering degrees. Seems a little BS to me, but that's life/education. --ShadowofLords (talk) 05:07, 3 January 2012 (UTC)
The distinction of BS and BA is not always so logical to me. some schools seem to just fake it. I've seen BS degrees in religious studies (huh?) and BA degrees in biology.... oh well. Pink mowse.pngGodotEn live 05:33, 3 January 2012 (UTC)
LSE gives a BSc in International Relations, for one. Uke Blue 06:25, 3 January 2012 (UTC)
That's what I came here to wonder about. But I suspect is a reliable source. ħumanUser talk:Human 02:22, 1 May 2012 (UTC)

Watch out, we're dealing with a badass over here![edit]

Seen this meme yet? Osaka Sun (talk) 05:15, 3 January 2012 (UTC)

Stub category[edit]

I think he's more of a physicist than a skeptic. Thoughts? --ShadowofLords (talk) 07:03, 3 January 2012 (UTC)

But we have an article on him because he's a skeptic. Peter Urist for Mod!(MW) 07:04, 3 January 2012 (UTC)
From what I've seen on TV, I would agree with SoL. Sam Tally-ho! 07:05, 3 January 2012 (UTC)
Not a skeptic. AceAce For Mod! 07:10, 3 January 2012 (UTC)
He's rarely brought in to talk specifically about his skepticism unless its a forum for skepticism. When he's on talk shows it is generally to talk about his writings and work in astrophysics. His TV show is about science, his upcoming show is a sequel to Sagan's...

The quote[edit]

If someone's wandering what the last revert war and blocking is about, see - the same BoN inserting the quote in the Wikipedia article, then citing it as a source here. The quote itself is lifted from the talk page archive of the Wikipedia article. And yes, the fact that our BoN is a racist and Tyson is black is probably just a coincidence - surely must have a grudge against science popularizers without much of a research career...--ZooGuard (talk) 09:28, 22 April 2013 (UTC)

Not a practising astronomer? And... so? Scarlet A.pngmoral 19:38, 22 April 2013 (UTC)

Doesn't Call Himself an Atheist[edit]

Here is his very recent podcast interview with Massimo Pigliucci. I know that Neil deGrasse Tyson is quite famous in the states but (as far as I am aware and prior to the new Cosmos) he's not so well known in Europe. I've got to say that I wasn't very impressed by his performance on this podcast. I got the impression that he really seems to want to avoid confrontation with theists. Or perhaps that says more about me. Or Europe and the States.--Bob"I think you'll find it's more complicated than that." 21:03, 14 March 2014 (UTC)


He's commonly accused of misrepresentingnReligion is Cosmos. — Unsigned, by: / talk / contribs 04:38, 1 March 2015 (UTC)

Rape accusations[edit]

Does someone know of this? Neil deGrasse Tyson accused of rape. --Panzerfaust (talk) 23:19, 1 November 2017 (UTC)

I was reading about that this morning. It seems yet another situation where there are accusations but no evidences, and it's really difficult to image how evidences could be provided. -Lankaster (talk) 12:06, 30 November 2018 (UTC)
Oh, funny. I misread the date of Panzerfaust's post as 1 December (thinking today was already the first) but instead it's one year ago, and the accusations just reemerged: -Lankaster (talk) 12:12, 30 November 2018 (UTC)
Please don't talk about rape you classless dingle. James Earl Cash (talk) 06:52, 1 December 2018 (UTC)
This is a thread about rape accusations, everybody who joins the conversation is supposed to talk about rape accusations, and nobody is prevented to joins. -Lankaster (talk) 09:59, 1 December 2018 (UTC)
James Earl Cash, just stay out of this. That comment, you should be aware of, is going to create yet another drawn out bickering, and this time, it's on you. What did the comment add? Nothing. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 20:25, 1 December 2018 (UTC)
You'll pardon me if I don't actually give a shit on pre-emptively cutting down on any talk of rape from someone who is okay with Brett Kavanaugh and added a whole lot of victim blaming bullshit on the Christine Blasey Ford section, and already seems keen on casting doubt on any of Tyson's accusers with his concern trolly remarks. I'm starting to see how the likes of Nerd and RWRW got elected for mods. James Earl Cash (talk) 21:48, 2 December 2018 (UTC)
More of this? <facepalm>--Don Juan (talk) 23:06, 2 December 2018 (UTC)
Eh, he's the one who's always siccing the mods on me for the barest of slights, you're damn right I'm gonna explain myself. I'm starting to think the bullshit here, like Ariel's rather short rap sheet despite all he's done and the election of known shitfuckers to the moderating team, is a feature and not a fluke. James Earl Cash (talk) 23:42, 2 December 2018 (UTC)
Sigh. How is linking to the Patheos page any indication of "casting doubt on any of Tyson's accusers"? --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 02:06, 3 December 2018 (UTC)
@James Earl Cash @Lankaster You two complain about this wiki so much and yet you continue to edit here. Amusing.--Ɖøn Ĵuan (talk) 14:19, 10 December 2018 (UTC)
James Earl Cash hasn't edited since. --It's-a me, Lgm sigpic.png LeftyGreenMario!(Mod) 18:26, 10 December 2018 (UTC)
Is there any evidence for these claims? Commie Lib (talk) 22:07, 23 January 2019 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── @Tabula Rasa Apparently no. At least not that I am aware of. Nerd (talk) 22:11, 23 January 2019 (UTC)

@Nerd should we mention that then. I would hate for his name to be attacked by unfounded accusations. Commie Lib (talk) 22:12, 23 January 2019 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── @Tabula Rasa Done! It is in fact mentioned by one of the sources. There has been no evidence whatsoever. Nerd (talk) 22:22, 23 January 2019 (UTC)

@Nerd Thanks, I would do it myself but I'm not really supposed to touch these things. Commie Lib (talk) 22:24, 23 January 2019 (UTC)

Should Tyson be informed that we are fact checking him?[edit]

Everyone makes mistakes. What kind of mistakes should be considered reportable in this article? This list of errata seems somewhat trivial, e.g. "orders of infinity." Now it is alleged that Tyson said in an interview with Joe Rogan that there are more transcendental numbers than irrational numbers. It occurs to me that 1) mistakes are commonly found in actual conversation because it cannot be fact-checked after the fact; 2) Physicists are notoriously bad at mathematical foundations, and 3) "there are more transcendental numbers than rational numbers" is quite likely the true statement he was going for.

I also have a problem with the Deflategate paragraph. Tyson is a notorious Seahawks fan. Should we conflate Tyson's cultural enthusiasms as a football fan with relevant scholarly biography? as a New England fan myself, I was annoyed by Tyson's botching the science, but I think it should not be reported as a real issue of scientific integrity. Experimental physics is not his domain. Bill Nye science guy did similar shit. I do not think that fact should be reported in his article, and so far it has not been.

Evidently Tyson is not perfect. Given that we should wish to promote minorities in science, this is not encouraging. Can we please not go fucking overboard finding fault with this guy?Ariel31459 (talk) 23:30, 23 January 2019 (UTC)

@Ariel31459 I think that Tyson would find insulting the idea that RW goes easy on him because he belongs to a minority. Thinker(unlicensed) 08:47, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
@UnlicensedThinker I think Tyson, like every human, would appreciate not being tagged with trivial criticism. I am going to remove your Evo and Bio section unless someone else speaks up for it. The claims are quite trivial. Batman and blind bats? Love hurts? No.Ariel31459 (talk) 16:59, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
@Ariel31459 Yes, I do think he should be informed that someone is fact-checking him. However, I do not think that that subsection should be removed. If anything that entire section should serve as a cautionary tale for those who travel too far outside of their own boundary of expertise. Nerd (talk) 17:30, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
@Ariel31459 You wrote: "Given that we should wish to promote minorities in science, this is not encouraging. Can we please not go fucking overboard finding fault with this guy?" but now you are changing your request as it was for "every human". Is or isn't your request based on Tyson belonging to a minority?
"I am going to remove your Evo and Bio section unless someone else speaks up for it."
Looking at the fossil record, @HopDavid and @Nerd worked on the section "False accounts of history, mathematics, and physics" so they may disagree (too). Thinker(unlicensed) 17:32, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
@Nerd OK. I am not trying to act precipitously. But let me just add, in the first place the claim about evolution and the pleasure principle is quite dubious. If sex hurt, I imagine the numbers of humans on the planet would be smaller than they are today, with extinction as a real possibility. In the second place, juxtaposing the legendary characteristics of bats with a tweet about a comic book super hero does not cross over into remarks any adult should take seriously. I bow to your priority.Ariel31459 (talk) 18:03, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
@Nerd Where does Tyson state there are five orders of infinity? The citation given does not seem to cover that at the time it starts.Ariel31459 (talk) 18:13, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
Yeah, I find that claim about painful sex rather bizarre. He should be old enough by now to realize that painful sex does not stop masochistic humans and other animals from having it. As for his claims about bats, he might have been joking. But since he said it in a short online post, on Twitter, no better, it is difficult to know for sure, unless he clarifies. Has he? Had he said it on television or on video tape, we would have been able to guess using the context, his facial expressions, and his hand gestures. I guess the lesson here is to be careful what you say online. (I'm not pushing my priority over anybody, so don't worry.)
Just wait for a bit. The conversation naturally drifts into infinity. Nerd (talk) 18:19, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
If sexual pleasure were not an evolutionary advantage, I doubt humanity would have come into existence. That is a very intuitive supposition, even if non falsifiable. The existence of a pathology (masochism) is a weak counter argument.Ariel31459 (talk) 18:31, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
It just means that the pleasure is greater than the pain, at least for most people. Furthermore, for most of human history, reliable contraception did not exist, so sexual intercourse between members of the opposite sex almost always resulted in pregnancy. Nerd (talk) 18:33, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
Yes to that. The point is?Ariel31459 (talk) 18:41, 2 February 2019 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── Cost-benefit analysis. Having sex comes at a cost. If having sex were too cumbersome, people would not be doing it. Nerd (talk) 19:23, 2 February 2019 (UTC)

"Given that we should wish to promote minorities in science"
Why? Isn't that the whole problem here? That this intellectual mediocrity got promoted because he's a "minority" (even though Africans are set to breed to 4 billion this century)? (talk) 22:20, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
TrollAriel31459 (talk) 23:01, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
I agree with @UnlicensedThinker that we shouldn't go easy on someone because of their race. We just shouldn't everyone one every dumb thing they say. Commie Lib (talk) 22:31, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
See, this is the problem: Tyson doesn't say a lot of dumb things. He has what? Hundreds of hours of conversations and narrations online and we have what? A half dozen incorrect statements? Most of them are trivial. News flash: Bill Nye the science guy makes incorrect statements as well: e.g., "Bill Nye Drops the ball on Deflategate". He said similar stuff about Deflategate. Can't find that on his page. Why? Because it is trivial. Ariel31459 (talk) 22:56, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
Tyson has zero achievements. He's just "black science guy". (talk) 23:20, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
If you read Neil deGrasse TysonWikipedia's W.svg, you will realize that is far from being the case. Nerd (talk) 23:28, 2 February 2019 (UTC)
I see some impressive appointments. I don't see any impressive work. (talk) 04:35, 3 February 2019 (UTC)

Sex that hurts[edit]

@Ariel31459 What are you doing?

"Tyson tweeted: 'If there were ever a species for whom sex hurt, it surely went extinct long ago.' This simplistic view of evolution may be wrong"

This simplistic view of evolution is wrong, see below.

"there exist some examples of species having sex that hurts, though they diverged long ago from the evolutionary descent of humans."

Tyson never spoken of humans, he said "species", so what's the point of saying they diverged from humans descent long time ago?

"Though obviously this claim is unfalsifiable"

Tyson claim is perfectly falsifiable and falsified: the existence of many species for whom sex hurt is a proof that such species did not go extinct long time ago, hence falsifies Tyson's claim.

Thinker(unlicensed) 19:46, 2 February 2019 (UTC)

I am inclined to agree that Tyson's statement is dubious when applied to all species. On the other hand, sex is always painful for species X seems to be unfalsifiable. Who knows what sexual pain feels like to a rodent or a cat? My last ditch effort at being correct would be that this is at least debatableAriel31459 (talk) 20:03, 2 February 2019 (UTC)

Disney is giving Neil a pass[edit]

Fox and Nat Geo have concluded their investigation of the claims against Tyson and are resuming their projects with him. No details available.Ariel31459 (talk) 23:35, 21 March 2019 (UTC)

Interesting, do the claims not have merit? Oxyaena Harass 11:17, 15 June 2019 (UTC)