Are you watching Cosmos?

I keep meaning to write about the importance of Cosmos now airing on FOX and on National Geographic, but I haven’t. Nevertheless, you should be watching this show. It’s more important now when more US citizens believe in angels than believe in global warming than it was when Carl Sagan originally created the show in 1980.

Here’s a quote from last night’s episode, the fourth in the series so far. A quick science primer for those of you who napped through physics in high school: a light-year is a measure of distance equal to how far light can travel in one year. If something is 6500 light-years away, that means the light from that object has taken 6500 years to reach our eyes. So…

“The Crab Nebula is about 6500 light years from Earth. According to some beliefs, that’s the age of the whole Universe, but if the Universe were only 6500 years old, how could we see the light of anything more distant than the Crab Nebula? We couldn’t. There wouldn’t have been enough time for the light to get to Earth from anywhere farther away than 6500 light-years in any direction. That’s just enough time for light to travel a tiny portion of our Milky Way Galaxy. To believe in a universe as young as six or seven thousand years old is to extinguish the light from most of the galaxy, not to mention the light from all the hundred billion other galaxies in the observable universe.”

Cosmos: A Space Time Odyssey airs Sunday nights on FOX and reruns later on the National Geographic Channel. To swipe a tagline from once proud NBC, it is Must See TV.

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