American science communicator and television presenter William Sanford Nye, best known as 'Bill Nye the Science Guy’, has called for ending racist practices, hinting at their senselessness in light of the origin of humanity's multiple skin colours.
In a now-viral video posted Saturday on Chinese social platform TikTok titled ‘The science of skin color’, Nye, originally a mechanical engineer, explains how ultraviolet light contributes to variations of colour in the human skin.
In the beginning, he displays a map of the world coluored with various shades of red, purple, orange, yellow, green and grey resembling the intense of ultraviolet light received from the sun. He states: “The more close you are to the equator, the more intensive the ultraviolet”.
“Now here is the same map of the same continents with just one colour. It turns out that everybody on Earth is descended from people who live here, in Africa,” Nye said, displaying a second map, with dark brown colour that goes lighter as distancing from the equator. “And then as groups of us move around the world, the colour of our skin had to change”.
The educational presenter then explains, “Our skin is where we make vitamin D. If you don’t get enough ultraviolet, you don’t get enough vitamin D. But if you get too much ultraviolet, then you break down your folates. You have to have it in perfect balance”.
He argued that the colour of the skin varies due to the amount of ultraviolet received.
“And that’s it everybody. That’s why we have different colours of skin,” Nye said. “We’re all one species, but we’re not treating each other fairly… So it’s time to change things”.
The one-minute video, seen over 6.5 million times on his TikTok page, has been widely shared on other social media platforms, with some Netizens saying, “Bill actually just ended racism”.
“Racism goes beyond the color of someone’s skin. it’s systemic and yes an explanation by bill nye will not end it obviously. it was said to bring attention to the video that is alll [sic],” someone wrote on Twitter.
racism goes beyond the color of someone’s skin. it’s systemic and yes an explanation by bill nye will not end it obviously. it was said to bring attention to the video that is alll— mari (@mxpxn) July 19, 2020
“Bill Nye is fed up. And I’m with him. Trust science. ‘We’re all one species’. I’m here for all of this,” another user tweeted.
Who else thinks we should call Bill Nye the science saint? https://t.co/rlA0z9d8Dk— James Kosur (@JamesKosur) July 19, 2020
How long till Trump retweets some white supremacist saying that Bill Nye has made some mistakes? https://t.co/8TPrpX0w41— Derek Cressman (@DerekCressman) July 19, 2020
If you listen closely, you can hear the exploding heads of Trumpists.— Bill Madden (@maddenifico) July 19, 2020
Bill Nye is a national treasure.pic.twitter.com/BgAYzk7xQa