Neil deGrasse Tyson is famous for many things, including his rather fetching mustache and his rather hideous wardrobe. Behind the chuckles and the wacky attire, however, lies a slightly darker side.
The man who famously said that he was “proud to be part of a species where a subset of its members willingly put their lives at risk to push the boundaries of our existence” is now pushing the boundaries of our patience.
Over the years, deGrasse Tyson has become increasingly condescending, rude and arrogant. He has veered from the area of astrophysics into other avenues, including, most recently, the trans debate. More specifically, trans women competing in actual women’s sports.
During a recent podcast appearance, deGrasse Tyson altered between moments of rage and maniacal laughter. In short, he failed to cover himself in glory. For example, when asked by the hosts, Konstanin Kisin and Francis Foster, for his thoughts on trans women competing in women’s sports, and whether or not their inclusion created an “unfair playing field, both literally and metaphorically,” the astrophysicist provided a truly nonsensical answer. Instead of barring trans women from competing in sports, deGrasse Tyson, who enjoys harping on about the importance of rationality, said that we should “fix the playing field, damn it.
“You know something? The day you fix the playing field,” he added, “this conversation will look completely ridiculous.” When asked how, exactly, one would go about fixing the playing field, deGrasse Tyson started cackling like a lunatic before admitting that he couldn’t answer the question.
This wasn’t his first time at the trans-friendly rodeo, and chances are it won’t be his last. That’s because, over the past year or so, the sixty-four-year-old has made it his life’s mission to advance the idea that gender is little more than a social construct, something that was perhaps dreamt up by a few men in a basement many moons ago. “Apparently the XX/XY chromosomes are insufficient, because when we wake up in the morning we exaggerate whatever feature we want to portray the gender of our choice,” he recently blabbered. Gender exists on a spectrum, he insists — but so do things like sanity and patience, Dr. deGrasse Tyson.
Where does his obsession with social constructivism come from? More importantly, I wonder, is it sincere, or is there something else at play?
DeGrasse Tyson spends an inordinate amount of time on TikTok, desperately trying to appeal to a younger audience. This investment appears to be paying off. After all, he now boasts more than 5 million followers. The average TikTok user’s age is twenty-one. Unless you happen to live under a rock on a distant planet, you’re no doubt aware that younger individuals tend to be incredibly woke. They tend to live more “fluid” existences. This, I suggest, is the main reason for deGrasse Tyson’s rather odd takes on biological reality. Like Howard Stern, Stephen Colbert and numerous other big name individuals who used to be fun, Tyson is playing to an audience. Not only is he insufferable; he’s also insincere.
When the astrophysicist is not defending dangerous gender ideologies, he can be found passionately defending Covid-related measures, including mandatory vaccines and masks. During a fiery debate with Patrick Bet-David, when the host asked if mandatory vaccinations were a problem, deGrasse Tyson spoke about a “public health contract” that American citizens had signed “implicitly.” Many readers will say that they never remember signing such a contract. That’s because you never signed it. When PBD said that many Americans were basically forced to take vaccines to keep their jobs, even though many of them didn’t want to, the science-loving author responded with a nonchalant shrug of the shoulders. My point here is not to demonize vaccines. It’s that people should have a right to choose what they put in their bodies. Dr. deGrasse Tyson appears to think otherwise.
Neil deGrasse Tyson sells himself as an expert communicator, but effective communication involves speaking and listening. He is very good at the former, but utterly hopeless at the latter. In truth, deGrasse Tyson is a lecturer. He speaks at people, even through them, but rarely, if ever, with them. His unwillingness to listen to others, to continuously cut them off mid-sentence, to disrespect hosts like Joe Rogan in their own studios, is as legendary as his mustache and titillating ties. deGrasse Tyson, the kind of guy who starts every sentence with “well, actually,” lacks intellectual humility. He’s intelligent. He has many fans. But no one is a bigger fan of Neil deGrasse Tyson than Neil deGrasse Tyson. This lack of humility undermines his willingness to negotiate, to compromise and to consider another individual’s point of view. The great irony here is that Tyson’s hero, Carl Sagan, spoke passionately about the importance of humility. Sagan emphasized the importance of nurturing scientific curiosity, not shouting down people who question your beliefs.
The demise of America’s most notable astrophysicist is a sad spectacle indeed. A man who once excelled at opening our minds to all of the cosmic possibilities has morphed into something truly appalling. In short, Neil dGrasse Tyson has become Neil deGrasse Tiresome.