Just hours after nearly 30 people were killed in mass shooting in El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio — both who appear to be white supremacists. Neil degrasse Tyson decided to ramble weak analogies on Twitter and now he is being slammed.
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The scientist wrote, “In the past 48hrs, the USA horrifically lost 34 people to mass shootings. On average, across any 48hrs, we also lose… 500 to Medical errors 300 to the Flu 250 to Suicide 200 to Car Accidents 40 to Homicide via Handgun Often our emotions respond more to spectacle than to data.”
The backlash has been extreme considering none of his examples mentioned white supremacy and there are regulations in place to bring down the flu, medical errors, car accidents, etc. Moreover, if 20 people died from the flu within minutes at a Walmart, there would certainly be shock.
In response to the backlash, Tyson wrote on Facebook, “I apologize for not knowing in advance what effect my Tweet could have on you.”
The El Paso shooting was reportedly the result of a young white man’s anger over the number of Hispanics in the U.S. That much was made clear in an apparent manifesto written by that shooter, Patrick Crusius, a 21-year-old white man who wrote that he was decidedly against “race mixing” and supports the idea to “send them back” and offering a prediction of “genocide.”
At least one tweet, apparently preserved by someone controlling an Antifa Twitter account, seemed to show he was in support of building President Donald Trump‘s wall along the nation’s southern border.
The shooter in Dayton, Texas was 24-year-old Connor Betts from Bellbrook, Ohio. Within 32 seconds, he used an AR-15-style assault rifle and a 100-round drum to kill nine people. He was reportedly wearing a mask, ballistic armor and carrying a black rifle, running toward the entrance of Ned Peppers — a bar where people ran to avoid gunfire.
Six of his victims were Black and one was his sister, Megan Betts. This police killed him within minutes and Dayton Police Chief Richard Biehl said Sunday, “Had this individual made it through the doorway of Ned Peppers with that level of weaponry, there would have catastrophic injuries and loss of life.”
Just last week, Santino William Legan killed multiple people attending the Garlic Festival in Gilroy, California. Similar to reports about Saturday’s shooter, Legan left behind social media posts that show he may have been a white supremacist or at least sympathized with the racist movement. The final social media post Legan made prior to the July 28 shooting endorsed a book that has been widely tied to white supremacist hate groups and ideology.
Clearly, Tyson’s tweet was offensive and tone deaf. See the reactions below:
Twitter Slams Neil degrasse Tyson After He Compares Mass Shootings To The Flu And Car Crashes was originally published on newsone.com
Remember back when Neil de Grasse Tyson wasn't the worst? There was that brief period of time in which he was just a fun science goober and not The Literal SI Standard of The Worst— A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Gayness (@CaitlinSnark) August 4, 2019
Well, I guess it's time to block Neil de Grasse Tyson— mi estas preter helpo!!!! (@frickbees) August 5, 2019
No one person caused 500 medical errors.— Sam Newell is not expecting a “visit” from the FBI (@BFranklin2017) August 5, 2019
No one person caused 200 vehicle deaths.
No one person committed 200 suicides.
No one person killed 40 people with a handgun.
One asshole with a high powered rifle killed 20 people in El Paso.
See the fucking difference.
In 2018, the fed govt spent:— Irene Tien MD FACEP (@IreneTienMD) August 5, 2019
$145M on medical errors
$340M on influenza
$147M on suicide
$597M on car accidents
>$1B on the opioid crisis
From 2004-2015, a measly $22M on gun violence.
These are stats. Not emotions. #thisisourlane
The flu doesn't target people based on their race.— Yell in a War (@jelenawoehr) August 5, 2019
Medical errors don't leave manifestos encouraging more medical errors.
Suicide doesn't aim for a "high score."
Nobody on 8chan is swapping gear ideas for car accidents.
Data divorced from context is just noise.
The problem with this tweet is that it isn't a good point. It's whataboutism. It's dismissing the problem. Humanity can focus on more than one problem at a time. And, at least for me, people intentionally killing others for their ethnicity or religion is a far worse offense.— TriteHexagon (@TriteHexagon) August 5, 2019
We refuse to takes steps to lower the number of death from guns. Steps other countries have taken, like banning them. which data suggest are highly effective. Hell, we refuse to even research the problem. You’re a scientist; that should appall you.— Jenny G (@JennyGutb) August 5, 2019