Constantly Claimed By Atheists, Neil deGrasse Tyson Responds To That Whole Concept — Wonderfully
John Lennon once sang "This ism, that ism, ism ism ism." I wonder if Neil deGrasse Tyson occasionally hums that tune?
One of his main points is that once you’ve declared yourself an “ist” of some sort, all kinds of assumptions follow.
Just look at what people assume about Bernie Sanders, for example, because he calls himself a “democratic socialist.” Or what follows when you describe yourself as a lot of other "ists" — a capitalist, a theist, an idealist, an opportunist. Or an atheist.
But I think the salient point that Tyson makes here is really perfect: “At the end of the day, I’d rather not be any category at all.”
That makes total sense.
(Full disclosure: I am an atheist, but I’m not one of the convention-going, agenda-having ones that he describes in this video. I just move through life without the need of a god.)
Political activism may get people invested in politics, and affect urgently needed change, but it comes at the expense of tolerance and healthy democratic norms.