As a millennial, I grew up with the catchy theme song of Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood, Arthur, Reading Rainbow and, yes, even Bill Nye the Science Guy playing in the background. At times, I would tune in and pay attention to Bill’s funny jokes and interesting scientific facts. I would quote them often to friends and family like my all-time personal favorite, your epidermis is showing. BAHAHAHA ( I know it is an old joke now but messing with kids that didn’t know was and probably still is hilarious).
Over the years, Bill has transformed from the fun, apolitical, exploratory science guy that I treasured into a flashy suit filled with left-wing talking points. He has shifted from being a childhood scientific icon to a cultish leader of the left. The silly theme song has morphed from an energetic and fun “Bill! Bill! Bill! Bill!” to the boring and painful “Pill, pill……pillllllll……..poison” that I have to swallow with my regular digest of news. In fact, I tune out most of the time when Bill Nye starts to talk now.
Thanks to people like Bill, I took an interest in science at a young age and happened to coincidentally get a degree in the same field of study (Mechanical Engineering) as Bill but from a different school (BYU) though also reputable. I also have managed to maintain a little bit of the Bill Nye the Science Guy spirit of yesteryear in that I love exploring fields outside of my study and capture the truth within them.
So how can I speak so poorly of someone that was once somewhat of a childhood hero?
Probably money and fame.
Somewhere down the road Bill Nye has seemed to have sold his *scientific* soul to something far less meaningful than what he was engaged to as I knew him. I don’t know what it was but he’s changed.
Though I have many less years than Bill in my science exploration, I do have the same overrated certification he does so I do have a little bit of authority to criticize him and his lack of authority on the subject of climate change *and other “scientific” claims*.
Simply put, I have asked many mechanical engineering professors with PhD’s in heat transfer and alternative fuels for their stance on climate change and EVEN they say they don’t know. *I have also recently spoken to chemists who are convinced it is occurring and people are the main cause but does not believe in a heavy-handed government to enforce his current conclusions. * Bill Nye does not have a monopoly on the facts. In fact he is being quite dishonest by using his mechanical engineering background to prop up his expertise in something he knows little about.
I don’t love this graphic because there are “non-scientists” on the opposite end of the political spectrum that will argue that the world is cooling because it still snows (sigh) or that it isn’t really changing (double sigh) but I digress.
I hate hate HATE the popular Bill Nye argument that 97% of scientists agree that climate change is real. This statement is so deceptive that I am tempted to write a petition, start a boycott, and burn down a Little Caesars to get “non-scientists” and “scientists” alike to stop arguing and listen. It completely baffles me that there aren’t more prominent voices holding Bill Nye’s breach of engineering ethical canon (see canon 2 and 5) to account.
I mean what is the purpose of having a canon of ethics if you don’t use it to hold higher expectations for “engineers and scientists” that have sacrificed true science on the alter of fame, wealth, and prominence? Do they not realize that many people take these celebrities to be the true face of science? It brings so much shame to science that I want to permanently place myself in stockades at the festival of tomatoes. Some things in the world just really pet my peeves.
So how is this 97% argument deceptive and just plain wrong?
One word. Heliocentrism.
Look, consensus is great but it is not for everything and it CERTAINLY is not for science. If consensus was required or even faintly suggested that a *hypothesis* was a certainty then we would probably still think that the sun revolved around the earth, that evolution is doctrine of the devil, and that frogs fell from the sky in rain. All of these ideas were once consensus ideas. It is the lone skeptics that progress society, not the mindless mob.
The oppressive power that pushed these ideas in the past, even coming from engineering and science professions, was blind religion. These days all you have to say is “these are the facts” or “science says” and with the same blind religious vigor, many prominent voices call for suppression and oppression. It’s quite hilarious but also quite frustrating because people that don’t care to actually verify “the facts” end up being a bunch of “useful idiots“.
Look, just don’t be the guy that condemned Socrates to drink Hemlock, or that one that sent Galileo to house arrest, or the one that burned Giordano Bruno to death at the stake. Just don’t be that guy or be like him or associate with his oppressive organizations. Just don’t do it. Your great great great grandkids probably won’t like you.
In all honesty, I don’t hate Bill Nye the Science Guy. I miss him. I don’t think he is beyond redemption but if someone doesn’t point out the error of his thinking, he will continue to be deceived by the popular consensus lie in that 97% of millenials probably think he is still a great science guy.
I don’t know much about climate change and chances are you don’t either.
Let’s leave the land of make believe and get back to searching for and defending true science.
*Edited for clarity*