Bill Nye The Gaffe Guy: His 7 Most Cringeworthy Moments

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Andrew Follett Energy and Science Reporter
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Comedian Bill Nye’s new Netflix TV show “Bill Nye Saves the Earth” was harshly criticized in the media for being too mean and political.

Even the left-leaning news site Vox called the show “unapologetically political” and said Nye’s “approach could use some refinement.” A CNN contributor described the show as having “a few structural miscalculations” and accused Nye of “preaching to the choir.”

Nye, who is well known for hosting a children’s TV show in the 1990s, left his objective”Science Guy” persona behind in favor of becoming blatantly political.

But not just political. Nye goes outside the realm of hard science to attack Christians, global warming skeptics and environmentalists.

1. Bill Nye The Gov’t Should Tax You For Having Kids Guy

On his new Netflix TV show Nye asked a bioethicist panelist, “Should we have policies that penalize people for having extra kids in the developed world?”

Nye suggested that having “extra” children is a wasteful extravagance that allegedly contributes to global warming. When the panelist responded that policy-makers should at least consider punishing people for having children, Nye excitedly replied, “Well, ‘at least consider it’ is like, ‘do it!’”

Nye did not specify the exact number of acceptable children, and so it is unclear if his own siblings would count as “extra kids” or not. Nye has a brother named Edward Darby Nye Jr.and a sister named Susan Nye.

2. Bill Nye The Ice Cream Orgy Guy

Nye’s TV show also featured a cartoon sequence that depicted different sexual identities as different flavors of ice cream.

A talking vanilla ice cream cone, seemingly representing a Christian who believes in conventional monogamous heterosexuality, tries to convince other ice cream flavors to “pretend” that they are also vanilla-flavored. After some argument, the other ice cream flavors eventually seduce the vanilla character into taking part in an orgy involving every flavor imaginable.

“We are of course enlightened and forward-thinking,” said Nye on his show when introducing the animated segment. “But not everyone sees it that way. But there are lots of flavors to sexuality.” While the segment mocked “conversion therapy” for gays, it featured the aggressive conversion of the straight character into a pansexual orgy enthusiast.

3. Bill Nye The Trans Sex Rap Song Guy

It is unclear why Bill Nye thought a rap song titled, “My Sex Junk” would be a good idea or how he convinced comedienne Rachel Bloom of the award-winning TV show Crazy Ex-Girlfriend to participate in the ensuing train-wreck.

Nye described the song about sexuality as “very special” and “cool,” on his TV show preceding Bloom’s performance. The song’s chorus proclaims, “My sex junk is so much more than either/or,” in reference to the belief that there are more than two biological sexes. “Sexuality’s a spectrum. Everyone is on it,” and “Who enjoys a fleshlight in the cold moonlight?” are examples of some of the other lyrics.

The rap has been described as “the most cringy [sic] music performance in human history.”

4. Bill Nye The Jail Climate Skeptics Guy

Some of Nye’s controversial moments predate his new TV show.

Last year, he suggested during a video interview that throwing “deniers” of global warming in prison was an understandable and perhaps sensible idea.

Nye was asked by Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow (CFACT) interviewer Marc Morano if he agrees with other green activists that the government should throw global warming skeptics into jail as criminals.

“Well, we’ll see what happens,” Nye replied. “Was it appropriate to jail the guys from Enron? Was it appropriate to jail people from the cigarette industry who insisted that this addictive product was not addictive, and so on?”

Nye was being interviewed for “Climate Hustle,” an upcoming documentary film skeptical of global warming that premieres nationwide next month.

When asked if his proposal would prevent scientists with alternative ideas from publishing their research, Nye responded, “That there is a chilling effect on scientists who are in extreme doubt about climate change — I think is good.”

“In these cases, for me, as a taxpayer and voter, the introduction of this extreme doubt about climate change is affecting my quality of life as a public citizen,” Nye said. “So I can see why people are very concerned about this and are pursuing criminal investigations.”

5. Bill Nye The Married For Only Two Months Then Sued His Ex-Wife Guy

Nye was married for two months in 2006 to a woman he later accused of stalking him and pouring poison over his garden.

Nye met his ex-wife, author and oboist Blair Tindall, after reading a book she wrote book about orchestra performers. Celebrity pastor Reverend Rick Warren officiated Nye’s wedding while famed musician Yo-Yo Ma played the cello.

After annulling the marriage, Nye filed a restraining order against Tindall on the grounds that she allegedly trespassed on his garden and covered it in a “toxic” liquid solvent. According to the filing, Nye feared that Tindall might try to throw the toxic substance on his face. He also sought to have Tindall pay thousands of dollars worth of legal fees.

“Bill Nye was the love of my life. I’m surprised he has taken this action against me,” Tindall told TMZ in 2012.“I have no funds to pay him, and he is a very wealthy man, so I’m not sure where this is coming from.”

6: Bill Nye The Abortion Non-Sequitur Guy

Nye has suggested that Christians believe every single instance of sex inevitably leads to pregnancy. He alleges this is in the Bible and that proponents of the pro-life position are mostly scientifically ignorant white men who suffer from this delusion. Nye claimed on Big Think that being pro-life “reflects a deep lack of scientific understanding.”

“You have a lot of guys of European descent passing [pro-life] laws based on ignorance,” said Nye. “Sorry guys. I know that what was written, or by your interpretation was written, in a book five thousand years ago, fifty centuries ago, makes you think that when a man and a woman have sexual intercourse they always have a baby.”

Nye thinks scientific knowledge proves that fertilized eggs are not human and therefore abortion is morally acceptable. Specifically, he says a fertilized egg does not develop into a baby unless after fertilization it attaches to the wall of the uterus or womb. Many eggs become fertilized but do not end up attaching to the uterine wall. Nye believes that somehow knowledge of the high rate of pre-implantation spontaneous abortions leads to the conclusion that induced abortion after implantation is fine.

The National Review characterized Nye’s argument as an example of a “non sequitur,” a logical fallacy where the alleged conclusion does not actually follow from what was stated.

7: Bill Nye The Flip-Flop On Genetic Engineering Guy

An episode of Nye’s current TV show called, “More Food, Less Hype,” expresses support for genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in agriculture. The CEO of the agrobusiness Monsanto appeared as a guest and pointed out that even insulin is the result of genetic modification.

Nye wasn’t always a fan of GMOs and only became supportive of them in 2015.

In his book Undeniable: Evolution and the Science of Creation, Nye argued that “GMOs may carry environmental risks that we can never rule out with certainty.” An episode of Nye’s previous one-season TV show “The Eyes of Nye” also presents GMOs in a negative light.

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