Thursday, June 17, 2010

Alert - Black Holes Racist!

Famed physicist John Archibald Wheeler must be rolling over in his grave right about now with the recent news that the term he coined in 1967 to describe a region of space where the pull of gravity is so immense that not even light can escape it – thus the term “black” hole – is considered racist.

Yes, it is true, the Los Angeles chapter of the NAACP forced Hallmark to pull from its shelves a graduation card the civil rights group deemed racist. Printed on the astronomy themed card, is dialogue such as, “Watch out, Saturn, this grad is gonna run rings around you!" And on the audio chip that plays once the card is opened, characters Hoops and Yoyo continue their riffing on all the things new graduates are going to do once they get out there to take on the universe... “And you black holes -- you're so ominous! And you planets? Watch your back!”

Hallmark calls the outrage a misunderstanding, claiming that the astronomy theme emphasizes the power the graduate has to take over the universe, even energy-absorbing black holes. A Hallmark company spokesman explained “The intent here is to say that this graduate is not afraid of anything.”

The card has been around for three years and uses a common astronomical term "black holes," but because some people hear the word “Ho’s” or “whores,” it has to be pulled.

This situation speaks volumes about the sad state of the public’s awareness of science. OK, we can only use the term “Schwarzchild singularity” from now on. And what’s next, censorship of all kiddy books about the solar system that mention the planet Uranus? Come on, how ridiculous can people be?

2 comments:

  1. Hey Hallmark, don't pull that nice card because of a bunch of ignorant NAACP lawyers who perpetuate racism via ignorance. Your card problem is a perfect example of my statement!
    I have long ago seen this trend and have lost all respect for the NAACP and for that matter the ACLU.

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  2. Totally silly and simple-minded! Hallmark should have taken the hi-road by pointing the NAACP to the Wikipedia entry on black HOLES and left it at that. Dumb, dumb, dumb. :Jay:

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