Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Conservatives Still Denying Global Warming. Up Next: Dinosaurs Not Really Extinct.

From a recent editorial in the Arlington Sun-Gazette:
THUMBS DOWN: To the Arlington Committee of 100, which seems to be moving away from trying to present balanced programs, in favor
of trendy activism.

This week, the venerable community organization was slated to present a program on global warming. Of the three speakers that were publicized to be at the meeting, all appear to be on the same side of the issue.

Which side? If you guess it's the side that says humans - no doubt Americans in particular, and probably Republicans most egregiously - are causing most of the world's environmental problems, give yourself a gold star.

The issue of global warming is far more nuanced and complicated than TV sound-bites would make it appear. Surely there was someone who could have been recruited to provide some balance to what, from outside looking in, appears to be a one-sided discussion.
Let's break it down:

  1. The event was not about debating whether global warming is or is not happening. That debate is over. The science is unequivocal -- our planet is warming, man-made greenhouse gases are to blame, and we must cut carbon emissions now to slow (never mind stop) its effects.

  2. The most accurate part of this editorial is actually the part that's meant to be sarcastic. It IS Americans who are most responsible for global warming. The United States, with just 5% of the world's population, puts out 25% of civilization's carbon emissions. That's not politics, that's science, but apparently the Sun-Gazette can't distinguish between the two. I hope that means they at least got good grades in civics in school, not bad grades in both civics and science.

  3. The Arlington Committee of 100 is the cutting edge of "trendy activism"? Their website looks like it hasn't been updated since 'N Sync was topping the pop charts.

  4. No matter what the issue -- global warming, secondhand smoke, evolution -- conservatives love to claim the science isn't settled, that the debate is ongoing, and that if anyone thinks otherwise, they've been paying too much attention to that liberal media. Global warming is happening, secondhand smoke kills, and evolution is why we have these kick-ass opposable thumbs.

Based on the science that says global warming is happening and we're to blame, what do we want to do about it? Do we want to take action to slow and eventually stop it? Or will we take our chances?

Those are the questions we need to be asking, and that's exactly what the Arlington Committee of 100 forum was about. If conservatives want to be a part of that debate, they need to adapt or go the way of the dinosaurs.

Post a Comment