When Kate Mulgrew, best known as the star of Star Trek: Voyager and now a co-star of the Netflix-only drama Orange is the New Black, was asked to do commentary for a science documentary film called The Principle, she jumped at it. Well, she got the shock of her life on Monday when Raw Story reported that The Principle was actually a steaming pile of pseudoscience. It pushes the utterly discredited model of geocentrism. Even worse, it's being funded by Robert Sungenis, a noted Holocaust denier.
On Tuesday afternoon, Mulgrew took to Facebook with a burning statement disavowing the film, saying that she wouldn't have gotten within a mile of the film had she known what its real agenda was.
It turns out that Mulgrew wasn't the only one hoodwinked into helping promote this hoakum. When Arizona State cosmologist Lawrence Krauss found out that his voice appeared on the film, he tore it apart in a righteous rant on Slate.
The notion that anyone in the 21st century could take seriously the notion that the sun orbits the Earth, or that the Earth is the center of the universe, is almost unbelievable. I say almost, because one of the trials and tribulations of being a scientist with some element of popular celebrity is that I get bombarded regularly by all sorts of claims, and have become painfully aware that ideas as old as the notion that the Earth is flat never seem to die out completely.Krauss' contempt for the movie was such that he didn't even mention its name, and suggested we'd be better off ignoring it.
Two other prominent scientists whose voices were used in the film told Think Progress that Stugenis had lied to them.
Dr. Max Tegmark of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology explained, “I was told that this would be a science documentary by independent filmmakers who wanted to increase public appreciation for science. I should clearly have asked for more details in advance! These geocentric arguments are about as unscientific as things get.”I have to disagree that this piece of junk should be totally ignored. It's due to be released sometime this spring ... if it's not too late, maybe we can find out who's distributing it and push them into yanking if iit's legally possible. There's a term for this kind of behavior--"moral turpitude."
Dr. George Ellis of the University of Capetown in South Africa said that the film was “not presented” as geocentrism to him. “Obviously I don’t agree. Not sue how anyone can hold that view these days. Must live in a timewarp. Like Lawrence, my advice is to just ignore. There is no point whatever in responding – it just gives the film recognition and publicity.”