Five Arguments To Use Against Flat-Earthers


Five Arguments To Use Against Flat-Earthers

Almost everybody knows and accepts that Earth isn't a flat disk but a slightly squished-at-the-poles sphere. The ancient Greeks proved that more than 2,300 years ago. However, in recent years flat-Earthers have been boosted by both the number of "celebrities" who lent their status to the cause and the web that let keyboard warriors spread their opinions across a global stage.

Several flat-Earthers are going to quite an expense to prove their theories correct; a guy took an airplane flight that cost approximately $200 so that he could use a level to prove himself right. Another is building an actual rocket, which costs around $20,000, to launch to space and prove his theory.

There are several ways to challenge those people's beliefs. We can discuss how the Sun wouldn't set on a flat world. We can also ask them how it is possible that volcanoes exist and earthquakes happen on this wafer-thin planet. Or perhaps argue whether an asteroid impact could flip it like a pancake.

However, if you're looking for ways to disprove it on a budget and without using any maths, here is a list for you.

1) The Fault Isn't In Our Stars. It's In Ourselves

The most straightforward, cheapest way to prove that the Earth isn't flat is to look at the night sky. At any given time, some stars and constellations will have a certain height on the horizon. Depending on our relative position on Earth we are not able to see some of them when other people are. The classic example is that we cannot see Polaris, the Northern Star, from the Southern hemisphere.

As we move anywhere on the planet in a North-South direction, we'd be able to see constellations which move up and or down in the sky, while new stars appear and old stars disappear. There's no way that this would occur on a flat disk.

2) Use Sticks And Shadows

The next step in the scale of complexity is to use sticks and shadows. To do that, you need two people at different distances from the equator and two sticks of the same length. Then, you place the sticks on the ground to measure the shadows' length at the same time. If the Earth were flat, the shadow would be the same. However, since it isn't, the shadow length will be different.

That's not only a simple way to prove the roundness of the Earth. It can also let you measure how big our planet is. This method, done with water wells instead of sticks, was used by Eratosthenes to calculate the Earth's circumference back in the third century BCE.

3) Weighing In On The Controversy

The material you need to do that is a piece of string and a small rock. Voilà! You've got yourself a very precise instrument which can measure something pretty significant: gravity. Now, the gravitational pull of a sphere is easy enough to work out with your instrument. The rock will always point directly down.

If we were on a flat Earth instead, then the little rock would be pointing at the center of the planet, and the further we would move away from it, the wider the angle between the string and the vertical would be. The latest argument flat Earthers used to disprove that method was claiming that there's no such thing as gravity. That's because they don't know how to deal with facts at all.

4) In Full Swing

If we make our little gravity detector a bit more sophisticated, we can create a pendulum. By using such an instrument we can show that the Earth isn't only a sphere, but that it's also rotating. French physicist Léon Foucault firstly performed this method back in 1851. While a pendulum swings, the plane of its oscillations will rotate and the time it takes to do a full circle will be based on its latitude. That's aptly called Foucault’s pendulum. How would this happen if we were on a static disk? Well, it couldn't.

5) The Insane Clown Posse Method

The Detroit musicians became meme-worthy eight years ago for asking “F#cking magnets, how do they work?”. Magnets, or the magnetic field of our planet, is by far the best way to deal with flat-Earthers.

There is a magnetic field generated by the motion of liquid iron alloy at the center of the planet. We can observe the field generated while it surrounds us and extends all the way into space. You can follow the field lines (like you may have seen in school experiments with magnets) by using a compass. Now the compass gives you a particular direction, North-South, and ends in two distinct points, that we call the magnetic poles. There's no way to create such a magnetic field on a flat disk.

Although they claim that Earth is a ring magnet, that doesn't work. A ring magnet has a particular magnetic field, where the direction of the magnetic field flips when we're inside the ring compared to when we are on the disk. Have you ever seen your compass suddenly point south while working north? And how could the magnetic field of such a ring be produced?

So, there you are. Those arguments might not convince the flat Earthers, but they will definitely challenge them. And of course, this last one will make them some hilarious acrobatics worthy of the Cirque du Soleil.

Reference: IFLScience



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Thinking Humanity: Five Arguments To Use Against Flat-Earthers
Five Arguments To Use Against Flat-Earthers
Almost everybody knows and accepts that Earth isn't a flat disk but a slightly squished-at-the-poles sphere.
Thinking Humanity
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