I went looking for Carl Sagan’s Cosmos on various internet outlets recently. I had the first episode in my sweaty little palms on loan from Netflix, and I was ready to give up and just get a cheap second hand copy of the program. Having found good prices on eBay, I thought I’d compare pricing on Amazon.com.
I went to Amazon, typed in “Cosmos Carl Sagan” and midway down the page I found “Created Cosmos“. Unbelievably, Amazon had allowed creation propaganda to be linked to Carl Sagan’s name and the most famous science series ever produced (if you click the search link in this paragraph, you will notice that this is no longer listed in the results. Thank You Amazon.com!) I felt obliged to review this travesty negatively.
I hate this for one very simple reason. Not that I’ve seen it, it’s religion masquerading as science and not worth my time to investigate. Much like the billboards claiming to care about poor pregnant women, but are actually nothing more than groups set up specifically to scare women away from having an abortion (every street in Texas has one of these billboards) this video exists merely to obfuscate the truth of science and to prop up the dying embers of religion in a scientific age.
No, the reason I hate this video, the presence of this video in my search results, is that I specifically went looking for “Cosmos Carl Sagan”. I didn’t want to get false results for Neil Degrasse Tyson’s new show (not that I don’t love it too) what I wanted was to see the purchasing options for Carl Sagan’s PBS program. Instead of finding a good offering for the real program, I’m offered this schlock in its place.
I missed Cosmos when it was originally broadcast because the backwater of Kansas that I grew up in didn’t have access to public television. We had churches on nearly every street corner, but only one tiny library. Cable was a new invention. By weird coincidence the cable company took over the Kingdom Hall across the street from my home in that small town, which was a great relief to us since the Jehovah’s Witnesses stopped at our house every time they went canvassing. While we couldn’t afford to buy cable services, at least we were no longer disturbed by people who wanted to pass on their twisted message of god on a nearly daily basis. There were no computers and no internet back in the days when I grew up. We only had country music radio and two fuzzy TV channels we could pick up with an aerial.
I’m reasonably certain that the idyllic setting I’m describing is something that the liars who created & marketed this program on Amazon including the keywords “Cosmos Carl Sagan” would greatly prefer over the current ability to find accurate information regarding the natural universe and what we really know about it. That they would give up not only blu-rays and Amazon, the current technological marvels of cell phones, electric cars, wind turbines, etc; all of science, medicine and progress. Give it all up and go live in caves clad only in the skins of animals that they had to kill themselves, if only they could be assured that their bronze-age god was real.
To them I say “go find your cave and give up your comfortable cotton clothing. Hand over your cell phones and your comfortable air conditioned houses. You do not deserve to benefit from the achievements of science, since you hold it in so little regard.” Either that, or pull this offering from the marketplace and apologize to the memory of Carl Sagan for ever creating it in the first place, much less placing it on Amazon falsely linked to his name.
I really want to know. Why is this program included in my search results? Why is the Creation museum allowed to key their products with the name “Carl Sagan“? This is disturbing, like finding homeopathic cures, and cigarettes in my pharmacy. Oh wait, that happens too.
Editor’s Note. I borrowed Cosmos on DVD from Netflix.com and watched it, right about the time I was watching the first season of Neil deGrasse Tyson‘s new version of Cosmos. It was everything that I expected it to be, which is quite an achievement in this day and age.