By: L. Maksoud
It is said that during medieval ages, many believed the Earth was flat. There’s also a second claim which states that Columbus faced opposition regarding his route to Asia because it was believed that he would fall off when sailing past the ocean’s horizon. Nowadays, we have the science to prove otherwise; satellite images of a 3-Dimensional sphere, telescopic projections of other planets (Why would only the Earth be flat?), and Antarctica being a continent, rather than a giant ice wall surrounding the flat, disk-shaped Earth as some Flat-Earthers believe.
There are at least 555 registered members in the Flat-Earth society as of August 2016, and these numbers seem to be increasing every month. Without the research, I would’ve never managed to understand why this surprisingly large group of people, who hold conventions in Birmingham every year, could even consider such a thing. But the reasoning and logic is interesting, hence why i'm even bothering to write about it.
To even try and attempt to understand what goes through their minds, we must first comprehend their belief. that being that the Earth is in fact, is a disk, with the Arctic Circle in the middle and Antarctica as a wall of ice (which i’m almost sure they got the inspiration from Game of Thrones) surrounding it. This wall, which is specifically said to be 150-feet-tall, is meant to protect people from climbing over it and jumping off the Earth. Now who would be stupid enough to do that? (Maybe the people who thought about it, we can never be so sure).
The first coax for this erroneous idea is that gravity is merely an illusion. They confirmed that objects do not accelerate downwards; Instead of this, the record shaped Earth accelerates upwards at 32 feet per square second by a mysterious force called… dark energy... *Face palm*.
Now what about day and night? How would that work? Earth’s day and night cycle is explained through the facts that the Sun and Moon are spheres, and like spotlights in a theatre, they illuminate different sections of the Earth. And during an eclipse, the “antimoon” comes out to conceal the original moon.
And how do they explain that people who have actually been to space have never came back and said “The Earth is, indeed, flat”. The believers state that astronomical projects like taking humans out of the atmosphere into space are just fake space explorations. These most likely originated during the Cold-War when the USA and Russia were ‘upping’ each other trying to see who could get to the moon first (which links to the conspiracy that no one has ever been to the moon).
When arguing with a Flat Earth believer, if you’re ever lucky to meet one, don’t try and use photographic evidence, satellite images, etc. They don’t find it fathomable. “It’s too easily manipulated” says the website of the Flat Earth Society.
Another question you can find on the FAQ area of the website, is how can a “passenger in an aircraft see the curvature of the Earth?”. Well, apparently it is widely said that to get a hint of curviness (if the Earth was round, of course) you would have to be at 40,000 ft. And planes are allowed to fly just under this altitude, being 36,000 ft. So, next time you’re on a plane, keep an eye out for a slight curvature (or not) in the horizon...