Bill Nye Talks ‘Traditional Fish Sex’ and the Unromantic Reason We Really Have Sex
In the ’90s Bill Nye the Science Guy entertained young audiences with his zany experiments that taught that science could be fun and exciting. During last night’s creation vs. evolution debate beamed live through cyberspace, though, the bow-tied science educator may have taken his science facts too far, declaring sex was really about only one thing-the war on the germs in your gut.
During his science-laden presentation defending evolution and taking aim at creationism, Nye offered evidence that Noah’s ark could not possibly have held every species on the planet and still not been able to keep afloat. He also pointed out that the Egyptian pyramids and civilizations exist that are more than 6,000 years old, making opponent Ken Ham’s speculations that the earth is not really billions of years old, dubious.
Yet in between fossil records, archaeology and astronomy, Nye also took time to explain how sex was related to evolution, which according to the Science Guy, is the real reason sex is truly worth the trouble and the hard work.
“Why does anything have sex?” Nye asked the crowd encouraging the audience to imagine the bees and the pollen and “all the trouble a rosebush goes through” in order to reproduce.
He then explained that one of the main purposes of sex is that genes get shuffled around and this genetic diversity helps species learn to survive and thrive against their natural enemies. That is why “traditional fish sex” is better than sex fish have with themselves.
Turning to humans, he pointed out that micro-organisms are everywhere, including the trillion or so that grossly live in everyone’s gut. These micro-organisms found in our bodies and our environment can also cause illness and even death, he said. Yet, species that use sexual reproduction, like humans, are more able than asexual reproducers to survive the germ-filled world.
The real reason people have sex, then, is all about the germs. “The answer [to why does anything have sex] seems to be your enemies are not lions and tigers and bears, your enemies are germs,” the Science Guy told the audience in the least romantic explanation of sex ever. “When you reproduce sexually you have fewer parasites.”
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