Astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson appeared on Comedy Central’s “The Nightly Show” to drop the mic on his flat earth battle with rapper B.o.B once and for all. The “Airplanes” rapper had fans and critics questioning if he indeed had his head in the clouds when he insisted on Twitter that the Earth was indeed flat and that Masons have been plotting for centuries to convince the citizenry that it is round.
To the shock and pleasure of anyone watching, deGrasse Tyson respectfully engaged B.o.B on Twitter about his assertion and insisted that, while he had a right to his opinion, he was indeed wrong. The back and forth on the social network resulted in B.o.b releasing a “diss track” to the Director of the Hayden Planetarium called “Flatline.” deGrasse Tyson had his nephew respond with an answer record called “Flat to Fact” rhyming over Drake’s “Back To Back” instrumental. But that wasn’t enough.
So “The Nightly Show” host Larry Wilmore invited Neil deGrasse Tyson onto the show to make it clear once and for all:
“It’s a fundamental fact of Calculus and non-Euclidean geometry, small sections of large, curved surfaces will always look flat to little creatures that crawl upon it. But this whole thing is just a symptom of a larger problem. There is a growing anti-intellectual strain in this country that may be the beginning of the end of our informed democracy. In a free society you can and should think whatever you want. You want to think the world is flat, go right ahead. But if you think the world is flat and you have influence over others–as would successful rappers or even presidential candidates–then being wrong becomes being harmful to the health, the wealth and security of our citizenry. Discovery and exploration got us out of the caves and each generation benefits from what previous generations have learned. Isaac Newton, my man, said ‘If I have seen farther than others, it’s by standing on the shoulders of giants.’ So that’s right B.o.B., when you stand on the shoulders of those who came before, you might just see far enough to realize that the Earth isn’t f*cking flat!”
He punctuated the soliloquy with this phrase,”And by the way, this is called gravity!” and a mic drop.
Watch the video below.