‘They Were Wrong’: Neil deGrasse Tyson Stopped Dead in His Tracks by Interviewer’s Vaccine Question


One thing an ethical, competent scientist should never proclaim is that the science is settled.

Science is constantly changing, with long-accepted ideas subject to revision as new data arises. Anyone who claims science irrefutably validates a preferred political position may be acting as a propagandist instead of an expert.

In a Monday interview, media personality Neil deGrasse Tyson, whose credibility hinges on scientific credentials, attempted to make the kind of “the science is settled” claims used during the early phases of the pandemic to defend his COVID policy preferences. What he did not provide was proof that science still supports those claims. Challenges to Tyson’s talking points left him speechless.

Tyson appeared on the PBD Podcast, hosted by Patrick Bet-David, a conservative Christian entrepreneur.

Even though Tyson is an astrophysicist, not a medical scientist, in the interview he positioned himself as an authority on vaccinations and the public good. Now that Dr. Anthony Fauci has retired, perhaps Tyson thought there was an opening to be the one to “represent science.”


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In 2016, The Federalist wrote about Tyson’s use of scientific credentials as a means to conflate his opinions with fact: “When you insist that facts and evidence speak for themselves, it has a funny way of silencing everyone else. As one intrepid Twitter user replied to Tyson’s initial tweet, ‘Convenient how the “evidence” always seems to line up with Tyson’s personal beliefs.’”

The discussion on the PBD podcast suggests Tyson’s habit of claiming the scientific high ground to overrule other viewpoints is still present six years later. But Bet-David was able to make some points Tyson could not brush away.

Talking about the controversial COVID vaccine, Bet-David asked, “Is it fair to say that some of the side effects we may not know for five, 10, 15, 20 years? They can’t say, ‘We know 100 percent of the side effects 10 years from now.’ How are you going to know that?”

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Tyson was forced to admit, “Yeah, OK, so no, of…


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