Carl Sagan, the renowned astronomer and scientist, is awesome because he is not Bill O’Reilly.
This can be said about pretty much everyone, of course, but it is especially true of Carl Sagan.
Carl Sagan was an intelligent, articulate, critical thinker and skeptic. His rationalism was infectious. His calm demeanor was soothing. He never felt the need to argue with teleprompters.
Carl Sagan wrote books about the virtue of science, the search for meaningful truth inside our universe, and the value of skeptical thought. He was agnostic, but also wrote about his own personal search for God, which he theorized could be described as anything from “the sum total of the physical laws that govern the universe” to something much more. But he was also smart enough to understand that the concept of God was something that could never be fully proven or understood.
The same cannot be said about Bill O’Reilly, who writes intellectually feeble books with divisive titles like Pinheads and Patriots and argues that the tides of the ocean prove the existence of God. Compounding his abysmal misunderstanding of scientific reasoning and critical thought, Bill O’Reilly also doesn’t seem to have the intellectual capacity to understand that there is no way to prove that God exists, or that this should not be an issue to a person with faith. Faith doesn’t need proof. That’s the point of faith. You really shouldn’t feel the need to embarrass yourself by revealing your utter lack of scientific understanding or logical reasoning in order to make a point that doesn’t even need to be made in the first place.
Carl Sagan knows where the moon came from.
Of course, we understand that Bill O’Reilly probably does indeed know how the moon was formed, or if he doesn’t, he would at least know how to Google it. But Bill O’Reilly seems to be wanting to make the point that you can keep asking the question of origin all the way back to the Big Bang and still not have an answer to “How’d it get there?” What started it all? Bill O’Reilly has a difficult time articulating that point, but Bill O’Reilly is also not smart enough to understand that this argument is a logical fallacy anyway. Because if you are going to argue that everything has to have come from somewhere, then don’t you have to apply that same argument to God? Oh, everything has to come from somewhere except for God? Carl Sagan would would have given you an ‘F’ in debate, Bill O’Reilly. In fact, Carl Sagan wouldn’t have engaged in such an unwinnable debate in the first place. Carl Sagan had bigger things to think about.
Carl Sagan predicted Global Warming, championed the search for extra-terrestrial life, correctly hypothesized the atmosphere of our local planets and their moons, won a Pulitzer, and introduced dozens of profoundly influential concepts into our scientific lexicon.
The same cannot be said about Bill O’Reilly, who doesn’t know the difference between a falafel and a loofah.
Carl Sagan is also awesome because he is not Glenn Beck.
The same cannot be said about Bill O’Reilly, but that’s another story.
Carl Sagan is effing awesome.