Brett Schmieder #5

In the 1980’s a PBS series rocked the foundation of scientific education and, as David Itzkoff of The New York Post said, it was a “watershed moment for science-themed television.”  Cosmos: A personal Voyage was written and narrated by Carl Sagan with support from fellow scientists.  This thirteen part series proved the importance of educating the next generation of children on the origin of our life, and thus showing them our place in the universe.  Fox picked up the most widely watched series in 2014 with Neil DeGrasse Tyson has the narrator. 

During the premiere of Cosmos: A SpaceTime Odyssey President Barack Obama had a 33 second intro where he emphasized the importance of striving to understand frontiers that we have yet to explore fully.  I believe that it is crucial for Americans of all ages to appreciate and understand the scientific advancements that are abundant in our modern society.  This goal will not only motivate the younger generation to explore their interests in Science, but it will allow America, but it will inspire the world to continue developing and enhancing our understanding and implementation of scientific innovations.

 My personal interest in science and desire to see the world continue its advancements and understandings brought me to watch the Creationism Vs. Evolution debate by Bill Nye and Ken Ham.  As a sign of my gratitude for the goal that Bill Nye, Neil DeGrasse Tyson, and many other scientists strive for, I emailed Mr. Nye this letter hoping that he and his fellow scientists will never stop striving to understand the mis-understood. 

“Hi Mr. Nye

     My name is Brett Schmieder and I live in Virginia.  I have had the honor of watching your show “Bill Nye the Science Guy,” since middle school…. and admittedly into my high-school career.  Currently I am a senior in High school, and thus I have been “forced” to confront my future plans.  Thanks to your videos and AMA’s, I have fallen in love with the subject of science, specifically biology.  Because of this I will be pursuing my dream of becoming a pediatric oncologist in college, but that is not why I am writing you.  I am writing you because, although I have not had the privilege of meeting you, you have been a very influential person in my life.  I watched the live stream of your Creationism vs. Evolution debate with Ken Ham and I can honestly say that you did a superb job.  I just wanted to thank you for your determination to get kids of all ages into science, and I hope that I will be able to join in on your movement when I get older.  

     Just a quick tid-bit- the most influential thing that I have ever read was Carl Sagen’s “The Pale Blue Dot,” but sadly I believe that it has not gotten the publicity that it deserves.  This simple picture coupled with a few paragraphs has the power to change the perception of our place in the cosmos for many people.  I have spoken at my school about this, and almost everyone was truly moved by it.  So I was thinking if you were to respond or add to “The pale Blue Dot” on your website, more people will become aware of it and its message will get out further into the world.


Thank you from a future scientist, admirer, and a dreamer

Brett Schmieder


P.S. you probably get this all the time but you have brought back the bowtie…… and during your debate last night I learned how to tie one so again …..thank you”


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