While it is strange (and disturbing) that some religious conservatives dispute the scientific consensus on the age of the Earth and the universe, another Space.com article this past week (3-10-2018) — Yep, the Earth Is Still Round, Neil deGrasse Tyson Says — reminded me that there’s an even stranger group, namely, those who still play with the notion that the Earth is flat (hopefully not just as performance art or for publicity).
The fact that an astrophysicist like Tyson found it necessary to address the notion of a flat Earth is telling. In the 21st century no less. But his answer provides a useful historical context and overview of scientific reasoning.
“Cosmos” host and astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson recently shot down the ideas of anyone who still thinks the Earth is flat. In a new YouTube video on the scientist’s StarTalk channel, he used examples ranging from space observations to ancient Greek experiments in a conversation with stand-up comedian Chuck Nice.
“What’s odd,” Tyson continued, “is there are people who think that Earth is flat but recognize that the moon is round. Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune and the sun are all spheres. But Earth is flat … something doesn’t square here.”
- The science argument
- The geometry argument
Is that the end of the story? No more flat-earthers?1
So, what if people still believe the Earth is flat?
“That’s OK,” Tyson quipped, “as long as you don’t run NASA.”
 Another Space.com article: “8 Times Flat-Earthers Tried to Challenge Science (and Failed) in 2017.”