Thursday, October 02, 2014

Neil deGrasse Tyson Should Stick to the Rhetoric of Logos; Not Pathos and Ethos

Rich Lowry does an excellent summary of Neil deGrasse Tyson's "just-so" account of a President Bush myth in The Cult of Neil deGrasse Tyson:
...When Tyson puts up a slide with George W. Bush’s name on it, the audience laughs, prepared to have its prejudices confirmed, and Tyson obliges with his bogus quote.

Tyson says that right after Sept. 11, Bush asserted the superiority of “we” to “they” (i.e., Muslim fundamentalists) by saying, “Our God is the God who named the stars.”...

...As Sean Davis pointed out in his initial piece on the dubious quote, it really came from a poetic tribute to the astronauts who died in the Columbia disaster in 2003. After quoting from Isaiah, Bush said, “The same Creator who names the stars also knows the names of the seven souls we mourn today.”...
Porkopolis has highlighted Tyson's excellent essay The Perimeter of Ignorance and urges him to take the very advice he advocates in it:
The Perimeter of Ignorance: A boundary where scientists face a choice: invoke a deity or continue the quest for knowledge...

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