This article originally appeared on VICE Australia. Flat earthers are not typically regarded as arbiters of scientific reason. That’s partly a result of their believing that the Earth is flat, and partly a result of them being steadfastly opposed to decades of hard evidence telling us it’s round. As far as purveyors of logical fallacies go, they might as well be climate change denialists.
But they’re not. The Flat Earth Society—an online community “dedicated to unraveling the true mysteries of the universe and demonstrating that the earth is flat and that Round Earth doctrine is little more than an elaborate hoax”—had the question put to them on Twitter recently: “Do you guys believe in climate change?”
“Certainly,” the FES responded. “It would be nothing short of irresponsible to question something with so much overwhelming evidence behind it, and something that threatens us so directly as a species.”
A screenshot of that tweet has since gone viral on Reddit, with many commenters highlighting the irony that a community who have chosen to die on the hill of flat earth theory would cite “overwhelming evidence” as a reason to believe in something. Others have pointed out that while denying the roundness of the earth may seem like a ridiculous proposition, it at least has less of a real-world impact than denying the existence of global warming.
“I don't give a fuck if they think the earth is flat, that doesn't hurt anyone,” wrote one Redditer. “If they don’t believe in climate change they'll likely continue to hurt the earth.” Another noted that “Believing flat earth theories may be strange but I don't believe it's hurting people. Certainly it hurts the planet far less than pollution.”
Others, meanwhile, have suggested that the FES is little more than an elaborate troll campaign aiming to provoke outrage.
“I don't doubt that there are people who actually believe that the earth is flat,” wrote one commenter. “That said, I'm almost positive that the Flat Earth Society is a troll account and nothing more.”
If only the same could be said for the climate change skeptics.
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This article originally appeared on VICE AU.