Born in the mid-fourth century, Hypatia of Alexandria was an eminent scholar. Her understanding of mathematics, philosophy, and astronomy was unequalled by any of her peers of the age. As one of the inventors of the Astrolabe - a device for charting celestial movements, a forerunner of the sextant - Hypatia's reputation was well-founded in this rich region of the eastern Roman Empire.
However, Hypatia became embroiled in a feud between Alexandria's Roman Governor Orestes and the city's Bishop, Cyril. Her involvement in the dispute led to her death, which by all accounts was a gruesome and vile demise of a great mind. Rumours tell of the mob skinning Hypatia alive with anything sharp the zealous crowd could lay their hands on - even broken tiles - as the feral Christians sacked a city that was the grand opus of Alexander the Great's empire. Their orgy of righteous destruction did not end in that brutal act of murder, it extended to the rest of Alexandria, focusing mainly on its prestigious Library - said at the time to contain every book in the world. Historians estimate that the rioting Christians destroyed over 95% of the books held in Alexandria's Library, and all the ancient knowledge contained in those pages.
After this religiously fuelled bonfire in 415, it did not take long for the Western Roman Empire to collapse. Pretty soon, Papal authority exerted itself across Europe, especially under the reign of the Byzantine Empire's Justinian I, who eased tensions between Rome and Eastern branches of the faith. What certainly helped matters for the Vatican would surely have been the Justinian Plague, a disease infecting the eponymous Emperor (though he survived) and claimed up to 50 million lives, over a quarter of the global population at the time. Doubtlessly the fearful turned to the Church for solace, something Rome happily exploited, probably with stories of how the plague was God's punishment. Being overtly misogynistic (Eve subjected humanity to wander and toil in the full world, Mary had to be a virgin for God to grant himself a stay in her womb). They erased an inconvenient knowledge from the world with the pesky genius polymath alongside the world's greatest depository of the time, the masses were easy to bring under the heel.
The Dark Ages were so-called because of the plutarchy of the Catholic Church undermined any scientific or technological development, until the Renaissance, where art and Enlightenment soon blossomed, even under Papal auspices. So fast forward roughly half a millennium and the modern planet Earth is now a very different place from the Roman Empire and the Dark Ages. Technology is the tenet of our civilisation; science provides the Gospel of reality and to quote Neil DeGrasse Tyson: "The good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe it." Moreover, the late Christopher Hitchens' stance that "that which can be asserted without evidence can be dismissed without evidence" held until now.
Bill Nye is an engineer and TV presenter that retains significant levels of popularity in America. His kid's show: "Bill Nye the Science Guy," remains an iconic show and recently, the Science Guy has migrated with the times to Netflix, with a new show, "Bill Nye Saves the World." Fresh off his heading up of the Science March - that caused a little backlash because Nye being a straight white male never met the criteria for a protest that was anti-Trump at its root. It was on his new show however that Nye - previously lauded as a bulwark of the scientific method - went Judas Iscariot on the sanctity of reason.
Nye's recent episode tackled gender issues, promoting the idea of gender fluidity and seemingly becoming a proponent of how gender and sex are not just black and white. The show uses a bizarre sketch using ice cream - with vanilla (cis-heterosexual) being intransigent on their being only one fixed gender/sexuality. First off, ice cream flavours are not comparable because ice creams are inherently not natural in the nature sense. Ice cream is manufactured by human hands, much like the new menu of gender identities. These genders base themselves on feelings rather than actual evidence that a spectrum exists, and obscure examples that a clownfish changes sexes are not applicable to humanity.
I'm gay. It is not something I "feel," it is something that I am. Because someone feels a little butch one day or a little girly the next, this has nothing to do with a gender spectrum, but more style and mood. Transgender people exist, as do intersex people. But like homosexuality and bisexuality, they exist as rare anomalies - being rarer still than homo/bisexuality. The idea that sex, even gender is as interchangeable as a heavy or light jacket does a disservice to reality and moreover, understanding of the scientific reasons for these anomalies. The major clash with SJWs came from Jordan Peterson over Canada's Bill C-16, which seeks to penalise those who misuses pronouns. Peterson saw this as a direct assault on liberty, and that policing language sets a dangerous precedent for allowing governments to restrict further freedoms. Now, this ideology is not only infecting social media and government (with Facebook and the City of New York introducing many genders that virtually no one will use), it has penetrated into TV too, with the most unlikely proponent at the helm. This propagation of a foolish untruth is dangerous and may become a modern day Scopes Trial in the court of public opinion. History has shown what the restriction of scientific fact does to society as a whole, but even online is our only tool when we are under house arrest like Galileo in the face of mainstream lies, we are still able to convince juries of our peers of the truth. That truth is, androgyny is a state of dress, or perhaps a cultural or artistic expression (David Bowie), it is not an ingrained state of being.
#Liberal, #Science, #Feminism, #BillNye, #SJW.
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