Earth Is Flat: The World According to B.o.B

Is the Earth flat?
Is the Earth flat? Photo: vitaga/iStock/Thinkstock

One of the most hilarious stories going around at the moment is a social media battle between Grammy-nominated rapper-singer B.o.B and astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson. It seems to have started when a video lesson posted with Tyson explaining to a bunch of college kids that the world was round was seen by B.o.B. He disputed it. The world is flat, he declared. He’d seen it from high up. He posted pictures out to where you could see the horizon. Flat.

Y’all be like… “y’all not high enough to see the curve…keep going.”

He tweeted still another picture taken on what looks like a mountaintop. “The cities in the background are approx. 16 miles apart…where is the curve? please explain this?”

B.o.B then posted a new song, a catchy number called “Flatline.” It repeats that word over and over. The earth is flat.

In his song, he samples part of Dr. Tyson’s lecture. Dr. Tyson is talking to the students. It’s filled with laughter.

“The earth spins around once every, what, anybody tell me? Yes [laughter]. Twenty-four hours.” He also says the earth is not exactly a ball. It is wider than it is high. The spinning makes it that way. It is also fatter below the equator than above.”

That kind of got me. It suggests that the earth is, like some people when they get older, pear shaped. But with people that’s because gravity pulls you down. What’s the gravity that does that in space? Neither B.o.B or Dr. Tyson addresses that question.

There’s more tweets from B.o.B.

“No matter how high in elevation you are… the horizon is always eye level…sorry cadets…I don’t wanna believe it either.”

“I’m going up against the greatest liars in history…you’ve been tremendously deceived.”

Flatline. Flatline. Finally a tweet from Dr. Tyson:

“Flat Earth is a problem only when people in charge think that way. No law stops you from regressively basking in it.”

My hat is off to reporter Daniel Victor of The New York Times, who reported on this story. Here is his lead paragraph.

“People at one time did not have the privilege of seeing a famous rapper debate a famous astrophysicist about whether the earth was flat. We are deprived no more.”

Personally, I believe the earth is round. But that’s only me. As far as the song goes, I really like it and I am going to download it.

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