Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – Why climate change is a state/church issue

The Freedom From Religion Foundation has an excellent news release on this.  I am a member and I recommend that you be one too.

Trump has appointed an active climate change denialist, religionist Scott Pruitt, to head the EPA. The New York Times documents in an article boldly titled “Denialists in Charge” how federal posts are now filled with officials “who have a record of openly denying the established science of human-caused climate change.” These include the fundamentalist Christian Rick Perry, our secretary of energy, known for mocking climate science.

Denying anthropogenic climate change is based on the rejection of facts and reality in favor of blind faith, wishful thinking or willful denial. Many of the climate denialists in politics, such as Vice President Mike Pence, Sen. James Inhofe and former Senators Michele Bachmann and Rick Santorum, deny climate change for explicitly religious reasons.

There seems to be a correlation between religiosity and climate denial. While other factors, such as political party affiliation, race and ethnicity are stronger predictors of views about climate change, Pew Research found “it is the religiously unaffiliated, not those who identify with a religious tradition, who are particularly likely to say the Earth is warming due to human activity. . . White evangelical Protestants stand out as least likely to have this view.”

Sen. Inhofe, R-Okla., cited Genesis to bolster his denial of reality: “my point is, God’s still up there. The arrogance of people to think that we, human beings, would be able to change what He is doing in the climate is to me outrageous.” Inhofe, who wrote a 2012 book, “The Greatest Hoax: How the Global Warming Conspiracy Threatens Your Future,” serves on the Senate’s standing committee on science. That’s outrageous.

A few months ago, the conservative Christian radio host Bryan Fischer tweeted, “Jesus would be for whatever is best for the poor. A warmer climate—if it’s even happening—is better for the poor.”

– See more at: https://ffrf.org/news/news-releases/item/29062-why-climate-change-is-a-state-church-issue#sthash.omwVox8Y.dpuf

That last quote just takes the cake for pure selfishness, ignorance and stupidity.  I guess Jesus doesn’t give a f@ck about the islanders losing their homes, the folks on the coasts who will lose theirs, and suffer worse storms, etc.

Attend the March for Science in Washington, DC on April 22, 2017, or find one in your area.  Marches do work, perhaps not quickly or exactly the way you want but they do work.  It’s to support the sciences, widen the diversity of those in the sciences and to stand against the clown and circus in the White House.

 

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Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – The slow slow progress of science

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It seems I spend a lot of time trying to explain to my relatives how the scientific method works: observation/idea which creates a hypothesis, which is either confirmed or disproven by observation/experimentation and if proven, becomes a theory (a great explanation in more detail here).  A theory, in this case, in the scientific sense, isn’t just an idea you’ve pulled out of your ass, like purple polka-dotted furry sentient fruit orbit Alpha Centauri, but something confirmed by facts.  Theories can be adjusted to account for new facts.  Damn few things are called “laws”, like the “law of gravitation”; they seem to only get that moniker when it’s pretty damn obvious that gravity isn’t going to up and change or say the laws of thermodynamics aren’t going to change.  No sane individual will willingly pick up a white-hot bar of steel in their bare hand on the assumption that heat exchange will magically not work that time.  It’s very hard to get religious people to understand that this is what they essentially try to make believe in, to pretend that the things that they depend on everyday will magically stop if they want it to, by contacting their god.  

Unfortunately, it’s not only theists who can take their time coming around to facts.  It can be done though, with enough work on both the part of the skeptic and those around them. It’s often very long, very hard work even with scientists. No wonder it’s taken so long to get this far. 

Dr. Richard A. Muller, often touted climate change skeptic, has changed his mind thanks to research and looking at the facts. He now thinks that climate change does exist and it is largely due to mankind’s activities. But not after doing as much damage as one man could by doing his part to further delay any action against such climate change.  He did this by having a opinion, based on a dispute about the use of mathematical techniques and letting everyone know it. If he had a question, I would have thought he could have said “I don’t know enough about the data, so I’ll get back do you when I do.” and that would have been that.  Unfortunately, he didn’t and ended up in bed with climate change deniers, like the Koch brothers who are notorious for sticking their heads in the sand when its convenient and supporting things like PBS’s NOVA series when its not.  Their picking and choosing of what science to support is quite like creationists when they want to enjoy the benefits of science but then attack it when it dares to show their dearly held myths to be utterly wrong.  Continue reading