Scientific theories explain natural phenomena in the physical universe. Given the current state of the physical universe—what with the raging wildfires and devastating global pandemic—I’m wondering: At what point do natural phenomena stop being “natural” and start being “evidence that our smoldering planet is the key ingredient in some intergalactic witch’s brew”?
Correlation is not causation, but that does little to comfort the people who realize that every time they glance at their phones, an elected official suggests that COVID-19 can be avoided by simply holding your breath until the virus thinks you’ve left the room and scuttles toward somebody else.
Albert Einstein, best known for starring in countless black-and-white posters, theorized that an object’s mass is unable to travel faster than the speed of light. This theory isn’t wrong, but it should make mention of things that can travel faster than the speed of light, such as right-wing Twitter pundits’ intel that the latest unarmed Black man shot by police had an extremely sharp knife in his kitchen at the time of the shooting.
Occam’s razor states that the simplest explanation is often the true one. Thus, we can assume that millions of people are living under an unbreakable curse that forces them to go to night clubs and buffets twice a week. Otherwise, we’d have to reckon with a far more complicated truth: that millions of apex predators picture a lukewarm Bud Light served in a water-stained glass and think, Yeah, that’s something I’m willing to die for.
The law of conservation of energy states that energy cannot be created or destroyed, but rather transfers from one form to another. Proof that I can destroy your energy with just two words: Remember X Æ A-12?
Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution famously states that organisms change over time by retaining positive traits and shedding undesirable ones. And yet, Adele released “25” in 2015 and wore Bantu knots in 2020.
Darwin is also known for his theory of natural selection, which states that the strongest, smartest organisms are more likely to survive. Despite this, six million Americans who saw “Sonic the Hedgehog” in theatres during a global pandemic are alive to tell the tale.
Werner Heisenberg’s uncertainty principle posits that an object’s position and speed cannot be measured or predicted, with a hundred per cent accuracy, at the same time. And yet, nobody batted an eye upon being told that droves of murder hornets were rapidly descending on the nation, because it totally tracked.
If an event cannot be replicated, it is likely not real. That theory doesn’t hold water when you consider that 3.3 million acres of California cannot simply burn to shreds all over again.
Relatedly, the oxygen theory of combustion states that oxygen is required for a fire to burn. Quick addendum: decades of treating climate change like a Babadook and hoping that it will vanish if ignored, paired with a penchant for cracking open the planet and sucking out every last drop of oil, is sure to keep the fires burning.
“The Big Bang Theory,” postulated by the “Two and a Half Men” creator Chuck Lorre, posits that the universe was created billions of years ago by a massive cosmic explosion. This would suggest that a small universe was created in September, when Ruth Bader Ginsburg died and every single good thing exploded.
Newton’s first law of motion states that an object in motion will remain in motion unless acted upon by an outside force. Tell that to anyone who thought that all the positive momentum behind Quibi would only build once everyone was locked indoors with nothing else to do but, presumably, download Quibi.
Newton’s second law of motion states that force equals mass times acceleration. In other words, a basketball being thrown from one player to another will travel in a specific direction and at a specific speed. But, if this law doesn’t account for those eerie, disembodied screams blaring over the loudspeakers in empty N.B.A. arenas, and the associated likelihood of a player totally botching a pass once he realizes that even basketball has become a dystopian nightmare, does it really hold true in 2020?
Newton’s third law of motion states that for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. Either this theory was debunked in 2020, or we’ve discovered that police officers exist on an entirely different astral plane, where the actions of using a counterfeit twenty-dollar bill, falling asleep at a Wendy’s, and sleeping in one’s apartment are punishable by death.
Some theorize that bats are predisposed to hosting viruses owing to their diet of bugs, blood, and rotting fruit. Although this does not explain the vast majority of COVID-19 cases, it may provide some insight into why Trump and his staff were ideal hosts for the coronavirus.
The theory of heliocentrism posits that we are on the planet Earth, which is revolving around the sun. Hey, maybe we should see if things are better on the sun.