BHA Distinguished Supporter Professor Brian Cox and comedian Dara O’Briain are in the ascendant! The world of sky magic practitioners has been shaken to its foundations after Cox and O’Briain said bad words about astrology on BBC2′s Stargazing Live. Astrology is “rubbish”, said O’Briain, and “nonsense” Cox agreed. The Astrological Association of Great Britain, which is a real thing, have started a petition which, astrologers predict, the BBC will later spend license-payers’ money having to reply to.
Martin Robbins of the Lay Scientist blog moves into alignment:
The section of the program that caused the fuss has been described in truly harrowing terms by ‘respected astrologer’ Angela Cornish, in an e-mail that was published by the SkyScript blog:
“If you didn’t happen to see it, there were two presenters, Professor Brian Cox and Dara O’Briain. All was going well until they got to a part where they had models of the planets in our solar system on a table and Dara was explaining that all of the planets orbit at different speeds and distances away from the Sun. He said only the earth orbits the Sun in 365 days and returns to its own place, showing that horoscopes are nonsense. He then went on to add “Let’s get this straight once and for all, Astrology is rubbish”The other presenter, Brian Cox, then agreed and said “in the interests of balance on the BBC, yes astrology is nonsense.”
Shocking stuff, I think you’ll agree.
This is not the first time that Brian Cox has waded into the astrology controversy that has raged in science for literally almost none of the last couple of centuries. The hackles of Britain’s astrologers were raised last year, when Cox took a moment during his Wonders of the Solar System series to explain to the public that “astrology is a load of rubbish,” a statement which pretty much echoes the scientific consensus on the matter, which says that, “astrology is a load of rubbish.” It’s a position that was first reached by Islamic scholars at least 650 years ago, and has been studiously ignored by such great minds as Jonathan Cainer ever since.
See Brian Cox deliver the BHA’s Voltaire Lecture 2010 on “The Value of Big Science”.