Bill Nye Boo'd In Texas For Saying The Moon Reflects The Sun

Bill Nye, the harmless children's edu-tainer known as "The Science Guy," managed to offend a select group of adults in Waco, Texas at a presentation, when he suggested that the moon does not emit light, but instead reflects the light of the sun.

As even most elementary-school graduates know, the moon reflects the light of the sun but produces no light of its own.

But don't tell that to the good people of Waco, who were "visibly angered by what some perceived as irreverence," according to the Waco Tribune.

Nye was in town to participate in McLennan Community College's Distinguished Lecture Series. He gave two lectures on such unfunny and adult topics as global warming, Mars exploration, and energy consumption.

But nothing got people as riled as when he brought up Genesis 1:16, which reads: "God made two great lights -- the greater light to govern the day and the lesser light to govern the night. He also made the stars."

The lesser light, he pointed out, is not a light at all, but only a reflector.

At this point, several people in the audience stormed out in fury. One woman yelled "We believe in God!" and left with three children, thus ensuring that people across America would read about the incident and conclude that Waco is as nutty as they'd always suspected.

This story originally appeared in the Waco Tribune, but the newspaper has mysteriously pulled its story from the online version, presumably to avoid further embarrassment.

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Comment by Ken Hughes on December 5, 2012 at 12:19pm

Well said Heather, well said indeed.  I've been an atheist for almost 30-years after being a skeptic from earliest memory and an agnostic up until I declared my non-belief after being dragged to an Assembly of doG for a year by my missus.  I now refer to myself as a "Card-carrying atheist" because I do precisely that.  My calling cards have the Greek atheos under my name and I am not hesitant to give them out even here in deepest, darkest Wise County Texas (the "Wise" name is an oxymoron for a Texas county.  A local friend and I have started the Wise Free Thinkers & Atheist MeetUp group and meet ever other Sunday @ 12:30 in the local Starbucks.  "Bill Ney the Science Guy" rules!!!!!

Comment by Heather Spoonheim on December 5, 2012 at 3:27pm

@Stephen Russell

And what I said was Bill took a very softball approach to pointing out that the bible is dead wrong about the cosmos - he's much more diplomatic than I - yet the typical Christian cannot address facts and only become emotional when any aspect of their cult scripture is thrown into question.

This thread was posted almost 4 years ago and the only people who keep bringing it back to life are Christians.  Read through the 33 pages of comments and you'll see the thread dies and then some Christian shows up here to tell us how we are all totally wrong about Bill, or Bill was out of line, or grammatically a case could be made for that verse based on the English translation - and that has been going on for 4 years.  It's not Atheists keeping this thread alive.

Comment by Heather Spoonheim on December 6, 2012 at 1:24am

Outer space is not filled with water - astronauts wear space suits, not scuba gear.  They sky is not a solid dome covering us like some sort of snow globe.  The earth did not come into existence before the sun.  On these matters the bible is dead wrong and I'm willing to bet my life on it.

The story is #3 in google because Christians just won't stop coming here and beating a dead horse on the very issues I just mentioned.

Comment by Heather Spoonheim on December 6, 2012 at 1:27am

Christian 'scientists' do nothing but try to shoe-horn Bronze Age doctrines into our modern understanding of the universe - in spite of understanding how it works rather than to better understand how it works.

Comment by James Cox on December 6, 2012 at 6:59am

"I am just curious, but if you were to explain to me why you believe what you do, why you don't like Christianity, why you don't like other religions, why you don't believe in a God, what would you say? "

1)  '..explain to me why you believe what you do..' As a person that has decided to move on after being only marginally theist, I think your question allows to once again revisit material that seems a waste of time. Being answerable 'to you' seems implay that you are here to bless or condemn one more time. Since I do not see you as a priest, father confessor, or grand inquisitor, it seems unclear if such a demand on my time is reasonable.

2)   '..why you don't like Christianity? ' For me it seems to be unneeded. If you must indulge, knock yourself out.

3)   '..why you don't like other religions?..' For me I do what I can to honor them when they atleast appear to do good works, respect civil rights, attempt to promote 'wisdom', consider kindness and compassion as high ideals. Else, like christianity I have moved on.

4) '..why you don't believe in a God?..' The concept seems unneeded. As a working hypothesis for the hows and whys of existence, it seems to not be up to the task. It has opened up the process of human questioning, and stifled it also. Again, I feel as if I have moved on. If you must indulge, atleast have the common sense to consider other options before making a commitment.  

Comment by Heather Spoonheim on December 6, 2012 at 8:50am

I don't believe there are any gods because I've seen no evidence of there being any gods.  I've seen plenty of evidence against any concept of 'spirits' or an 'afterlife'.  The Christian concept of a god is self-refuting.  You've got a father who sacrificing his own son out of love for humans - but wait, the son IS the father, which sort of negates the father/son relationship and therefore the magnitude of the sacrifice - but wait, if Jesus is STILL ALIVE and going to return then there was no sacrifice - was there?  It never ends.

The reason I don't like Christianity is it pumps people's heads full of such contradictory malarkey and then tells them that if they don't believe it then they will burn alive for all eternity.  This creates a bunch of brainwashed zombies who walk around smiling with glazed over eyes while many of their cohorts drive pregnant teens and teenage gays to suicide - and they all get together on Sunday and sing happy songs about their endeavors.

The other religions aren't much better.

I'm happy with my life but that has nothing to do with whether or not 4-sided triangles exist.  Christians often suggest that gods must be believed in because it's scary or sad to think there isn't one - but the appeal of any idea attests nothing to its veracity.

Comment by Heather Spoonheim on December 7, 2012 at 11:27pm

That's about the 10th one to do so since I've been on this site, lol!

Comment by James Cox on December 8, 2012 at 4:01pm

Are we creating enemies, or people that are now stuck with doing their home work? Will they return after years of exploration, soul searching, and growing some version of an enlightened life, to find some solace among the rest of us, trying to find our way without a big daddy? Is he just one more brick from the wall, that hides reality from many, or will he submerge himself more deeply in fantasy?  Are 10, another window, or a bigger wall? I might be wearing out metaphor......  

Comment by Pope Beanie on December 8, 2012 at 9:33pm


Have you ever refuted, or felt the need to refute Islam, or Judaism?

If NO, then our only difference is that I also don't need to refute Christianity. Nor do we need to laboriously refute unicorns, or flying spaghetti monsters, right?

If YES, then hopefully you could simply copy/paste your success to here, and enlighten us, too?

Comment by Don on December 10, 2012 at 9:20am

The argument against Christianity, Steven, is one you have already heard but have not thought about carefully enough.  For hundreds of years, the Romans believed in and worshipped their many gods.  Likewise the Norse people and other early peoples.  Those gods (and all the beliefs attached to them) are now recognized as elements of poetic myth.  Like the Roman gods, the gods and stories of Christianity are also elements of myth.  There is no evidence for them whatsoever, and those people who suffer from the conviction that they are real are prevented from fully appreciating what truly is real in this the only life they will ever have.


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