Most well known as the “Science Guy,” Bill Nye tossed out his unsolicited sagelike opinion about American history this past Sunday in order to celebrate June 19th.
The internet was not kind in its response.
“The United States we know today was built with the labor of enslaved Black Americans. The last were not freed (officially) until 19 June 1865. Let us celebrate— and never forget,” stated Nye in a tweet, alongside a picture of him sporting a small pocket edition of the U.S. constitution.
The United States we know today was built with the labor of enslaved Black Americans. The last were not freed (officially) until 19 June 1865. Let us celebrate— and never forget. pic.twitter.com/AtfgkoZ3FN
— Bill Nye (@BillNye) June 19, 2022
Many posts all across social media highlighted the fact that Nye got it entirely wrong on multiple counts; the Emancipation Proclamation, which officially freed slaves in America, was passed in 1863 but was still put on hold until 1865 when it was ratified in December, and slavery was still quite present across quite a few states even in the wake of U.S. General Gordon Granger informing Texans on the 19th of June in 1865, that the Emancipation Proclamation has been passed in 1863, the date currently celebrated as “Juneteenth.”
This is not true. Juneteenth doesn’t commemorate the 13th Amendment. It commemorates news of the Emancipation Proclamation reaching Texas. Two union states had slavery until December 1865.
— InvestingLegend (@Investinglegend) June 20, 2022
Not exactly. You’re right about the economy being built on slavery, both north and south, but slavery didn’t end on Juneteenth. It ended December 6, 1865 when the 13th Amendment was ratified. Slavery was STILL legal in the “northern” states of Delaware and Kentucky until that day
— L. Ron James (@CaptainLetdown) June 19, 2022
Too bad Bill Nye was wrong.
The last enslaved people weren't freed until the 13th Amendment was ratified in December 1865.
The Emancipation Proclamation didn't cover Kentucky, along with Delaware, Maryland, West Virginia, & Missouri.
Read a history book Bill.
— CatsFanInOhio 🇺🇦 (@michaeldf88) June 20, 2022
This past November, Old Uncle Joe stood alongside Nye in a heavily criticized video stating support for Biden’s multi-trillion-dollar infrastructure bill.
Nye has given his unsolicited wisdom out online before. Back in May of 2019, he seemed to have a meltdown in a clip that was highlighted on HBO’s “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver,” in which he rabidly claimed, “The planet’s on f***ing fire!” and whined, “Grow the f*** up! You’re not children anymore!”
The video of Nye and his expletive rich comments was prompted by Oliver, who claimed:
However bumpy its rollout was, to its eternal credit the Green New Deal has succeeded in getting people talking. But that won’t mean anything unless that talk now turns to actions, and putting a price on carbon could potentially be one of them, although let me reiterate, it will not be enough on its own by a longshot. We’re going to need a lot of different policies working in tandem and we have to take action right now.
But you don’t have to just take that from me; instead, I’m happy to say that Bill Nye has actually agreed to help drive the urgency home at this point by actually doing one of his enjoyable lighthearted demonstrations. So Bill, please, please, do you have a fun experiment for us?
The video of Nye also showed him wearing his lab coat and standing alongside a blanket, a globe, a pile of sand, and a fire extinguisher. Nye claimed, “Here, I’ve got an experiment for you. Safety glasses on.” after putting on a pair of safety goggles, he went on “By the end of this century, if emissions keep rising, the average temperature on Earth could go up another four to eight degrees.” At which point he quickly produced a blowtorch and then announced, “What I’m saying is, the planet’s on f***ing fire!”
At this point Nye burned the globe, then motioned to the blanket, fire extinguisher and the sand sitting on the table alongside the burning globe, claiming, “There are a lot of things we could do to put it out. Are any of them free? No, of course not, nothing’s free, you idiots!”
Nye screamed “Grow the f*** up! You’re not children anymore! I didn’t mind explaining photosynthesis to you when you were 12, but you’re adults now, and this is an actual crisis! Got it?!” yanking off his glasses, he continued yelling, “Safety glasses off, motherf*****s!” He then made a lackluster attempt to blow out the fire before storming offscreen.