Bill Nye, the President’s Climate Science Guy

April 25, 2015

Chris Mooney in the Washington Post:

“Change the world!” is probably Nye’s trademark line — it was written in a 1992 “rules of the road” memo, he says, that he delivered to all incoming staff on the set of the 1990s PBS show “Bill Nye the Science Guy,” telling them modestly what their goals were.

With that TV series, Nye captivated kids with scientific showmanship and humor. In the last few years, though, he has not only recaptured that now-grown-up audience but won an even larger one, with something quite different.

He’s still a jokester — but he’s also become someone who acts a bit like a science gladiator, willing to debate anyone who expressed skepticism about the science of evolution and climate change. He’ll do it on TV — or even at the Creation Museum in Kentucky, where he famously debated creationist leader Ken Ham.

In the process, he’s become one of the nation’s leading spokespeople on the climate change issue. “It wasn’t conscious,” Nye say. “I was just playing the hand I was dealt. I take the complicated ideas and make them accessible to everybody.”

There is, admittedly, sometimes a tension involved in Nye’s newer and more politically charged role. His friend and fellow science celebrity Neil deGrasse Tyson declines to debate those who challenge science — sticking more with the role of an educator.

Nye feels different. “Bring it on,” he says.

One Response to “Bill Nye, the President’s Climate Science Guy”

  1. Says:

    The same issues about science and, mathematics especially, were focused under Ike after Sputnik. Teaching was begun at 6:0 0am on PBS to educate grade school educators and etc. But, sadly nothing has changed…. We are dumbed by our entertainers and singers and sport figures. Lets tax the stuff that is harming our cultural depth and knowledge. Remember LENR was begun in the USA by Pons and Fleischmann but commercialized by an Italian, Rossi, while MIT and Cal Tech fed the scientific community wrong data to stop our national effort into that technology in 1998-90.

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