After traveling all the way from the United States to Australia by plane, Shaquille O’Neal provided more explanation for his claims that the Earth is flat.
During an interview on The Kyle & Jackie O Show, the question was posed to the NBA icon, who is now 50 years old, as to whether his previous statements regarding the theory were a “joke” or whether he did, in fact, believe the concept to be accurate.
“It’s a theory,” O’Neal told the hosts Kyle and Jackie. “It’s just a theory, they teach us a lot of things. It’s just a theory,” he repeated.
The former star of the Los Angeles Lakers provided an illustration of his line of thinking by referring to the trip he took from the United States to Australia.
“I flew 20 hours today, not once did I go this way,” O’Neal said, noting that he “didn’t tip over” or “go upside down.” He continued by saying that he was confused as to whether or not the globe was rotating.
“You know they say the world is spinning? I’ve lived on a lake for 30 years and I’ve never seen the lake move to the left or right,” he told listeners. Shaq then remarked, “It’s still a straight line,” when Kyle stated that it is feasible to go from the United States to Australia from both coasts.
In 2017, during a conversation on “The Big Podcast With Shaq” with co-host John Kincade, the NBA Hall of Famer first voiced his viewpoint publicly for the first time.
“It’s true. The Earth is flat,” he said at the time.
“Listen, there are three ways to manipulate the mind—what you read, what you see and what you hear. In school, the first thing they teach us is, ‘Oh, Columbus discovered America,’ but when he got there, there were some fair-skinned people with long hair smoking on the peace pipes. So, what does that tell you? Columbus didn’t discover America.”
“I’m just saying. I drive from Florida to California all the time, and it’s flat to me,” he continued. “I do not go up and down at a 360-degree angle and all that stuff about gravity. Have you looked outside Atlanta lately and seen all these buildings? You mean to tell me that China is under us? China is under us? It’s not. The world is flat.”
After that, he continued to argue his point, but now against satellite imaging, claiming that it was “drawn and made up.”
A number of famous basketball players, such as guard Kyrie Irving of the Brooklyn Nets, wing Wilson Chandler of the Denver Nuggets, and forward Draymond Green of the Golden State Warriors, all also apparently believe that the Earth is flat.
Because of the widespread interest shown in the story, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver felt compelled to address the topic at a press conference held in conjunction with the 2017 NBA All-Star Game.
“Kyrie and I, you know, went to the same college. He may have taken some different courses than I did,” Silver said before adding, “Personally, I believe the world is round.”
Whether or not O’Neal is making light of the situation, a number of experts have expressed concern about the implications of his statements in the past.
In 2017, Sam Bentley, a professor of geology and geophysics at the celebrity’s alma college, Louisiana State University, told Bleacher Report that the former center should “act responsibly” given that he has such a wide reaching platform.
“If Shaquille O’Neal is claiming that the Earth is flat based on his observations driving from California to the East Coast, then he is not using all of the available data,” Bentley told the outlet.
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