Neil deGrasse Tyson Talks To Paparazzi About Smoking Weed In Space


Dr. Alfredo Carpineti

Senior Staff Writer & Space Correspondent

clockSep 14 2018, 18:17 UTC

Astronaut by Vadim Sadovski + Weed By Yarygin/Shutterstock

Astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson, being a professional science communicator, is constantly getting asked questions. We're unsure if he ever got something as weird as what TMZ asked him recently. They wanted to know what it would be like to smoke weed in space.

“The problem is, in space now, many things will kill you. So if you do anything to alter your understanding of what is reality, that’s not in the interest of your health," deGrasse Tyson explained in the video. "If you want to get high in space, lock yourself in your cabin and don’t come out. 'Cause you could break stuff... inadvertently.” 


Since the International Space Station is a closed environment, it would be very very very unlikely that anyone would be permitted to smoke weed on it. Astronauts and cosmonauts are not even allowed to drink alcohol, the most culturally accepted of the mind-altering substances humans have used for millennia.

“Alcohol is not permitted onboard the International Space Station for consumption,” Daniel G Huot, spokesperson for NASA’s Johnson Space Center, told the BBC a few years ago. “Use of alcohol and other volatile compounds are controlled on [the] ISS due to impacts their compounds can have on the station’s water recovery system.”

The ISS doesn’t even allow alcohol in the form of mouthwash, perfumes, or aftershave. We doubt someone would bring a blunt to the ISS and smoke it up there. Getting weed in space might be possible though, in the form of a scientific experiment.


Before the diversion about smoking weed in Space, TMZ asked deGrasse Tyson about Elon Musk and his recent interview with Joe Rogan where the Space X magnate smoked weed on camera.

“Let the man get high if he wants to get high,” deGrasse Tyson said. “He has to obey the SEC [the US Securities and Exchange Commission] clearly. But if he doesn’t want to obey the SEC then he’s got to have a private company where he can do what he wants. But he took his company public so there is an accountability there to the public trust of what goes on the stock market.”

Nevertheless, the astrophysicist points out that as far as he’s concerned (re access to space), “he’s the only game in town” even claiming that he’s the best thing the US has had since Thomas Edison. This comparison is probably fair since both are influential businessmen who have polarized public opinion. Musk has been in the news lately due to erratic public behaviors as well as baseless attacks on scientists and one of the rescuers of the Thai boys stuck in the cave.


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