July 8, 1992 Voice of the People Chicago Tribune 435 N. Michigan Ave. Chicago, IL 60611 To
July 8, 1992
Voice of the People
435 N. Michigan Ave.
Chicago, IL 60611
To the Editor:
It seems that every time I turn around, I hear another story
about the "sorry state" of scientific knowledge among the general
public in this country. While I don't profess to know the cause
or the solution, I can certainly say that two-page newspaper
stories discussing astrology conventions don't help the
situation, especially when printed with a chart that purports to
"predict" the fate of our country based on star positions
(Tempo, July 1).
Sure, you included a short quote from an astronomer who
states truthfully that there is no scientific basis for claiming
that the position of stars affect people, but it seems almost an
afterthought, buried at the end of the story. In other places,
an astrologer is quoted on how their group would like to "portray
astrology as a professional science," and the story goes on to
state that "the workings of astrology are still in question."
There is no "question" about the workings of astrology. The
truth is quite simple: It doesn't work. Perhaps when
astrologers can come up with some scientific proof that astrology
is anything more than generalized guessing, they will be taken
seriously. I'm not holding my breath in expectation.
I can understand the occasional printing of such a story
under the guise of "public interest," but the Tribune seems
dedicated to the support of this pseudo-science. The very same
day the article was printed, the INC. column mentioned that Ann
Powell, a local astrologer, supposedly predicted the recent
California earthquake. Wow! Perhaps they will now print all the
OTHER predictions she has ever made, so the public can get a true
picture of just how accurate she really is.
And, if that weren't enough, every day you print a horoscope
column, asking people to call a 900 number and spend their money
to get a "personal" forecast. On Sundays, you put this column
directly next to the short column on scientific discoveries. I'm
certainly not trying to promote censorship by asking you to stop
printing the horoscope column, but why not put it where it
belongs -- in the comics section.
E-Mail Fredric L. Rice / The Skeptic Tank