Believe in Climate Change

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If I hear one more person use the cold weather as an argument against global climate change, I swear I am going to burst.

If I hear one more person use the cold weather as an argument against global climate change, I swear I am going to burst.

 

If you live in a climate like I do, the winter months are brutal.  Mother Nature in these parts of Ohio is a cold, ruthless wench.  She slaps us around with her piles of snow and her cutting winds.  By the end of February, it is unbearable, and I am a cranky, miserable curmudgeon.

As much as I cannot stand the Cleveland winters, there is something that irks me even more, and that is the people who use the cold winters to dispute the fact of global climate change.  This drives be bonkers.  Of course it is going to be cold.  Global climate change does not mean winter weather is going to stop, or that there will not be any more cold days.  We still have seasons because the earth still orbits the sun on the same path and with the same tilt.  Deal with it like the rest of us and stop using it for your antagonistic fodder.

I realize people like to argue about political talking points, and we all know this is a big one.  It bothers me, however, that people will flat out deny the existence of facts given by leading scientists in the world for what seems to me to be no other reason than a stubborn alliance to a given political party.

For just a moment, let us jump into the fictional world where people ignore or minimize the empirical evidence that support climate change.  In fact, let us take science completely out of the argument and simply look at this rationally.  Let us literally look at, and think about, the leading human action that results in climate change, which is carbon dioxide emissions from power plants and transportation.

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Stare at this air pollution for a few minutes and tell me we should not regulate carbon emissions.

 

For those skeptics of global climate change, I would ask them to consider sucking on the tailpipe of a running car.  I would ask them to sit and watch a power plant as it puffs massive plumes of smoke into the atmosphere.  I would ask them to really soak these activities in, and think hard about their observations. Then, I would ask them if they can look me in the eyes and tell me that they think these activities are not harmful to the health of the planet, and to their own self.  I would venture to say that even the most staunch global climate change skeptics would not even need to participate in these observations to agree that these activities are not good for our planet.

Which leads me to the part where I question the motives of the global climate change conspiracy heads.  Even if the scientists who assert the reality of global climate change are wrong, which they are not, and the massive amounts of scientific evidence is incorrect, which it is not, why are some people so opposed to legislations that is aimed at reducing carbon emissions? Why are they trying so hard to convince the world that there is a large-scale conspiracy going on that is aimed at controlling people through deception?  Why do they care that people are trying to make the environment cleaner?  Really, who cares what the agendas or reasons are for an individual, organization, or the government to push for a cleaner environment as long as the environment gets cleaner?

To these obtuse skeptics I say, “THE END RESULT IS A CLEANER ENVIRONMENT, SO WHO CARES ABOUT THE AGENDA.”  Even if global climate change was a big lie, which it is not, the end result is awareness, action, and a cleaner world for everyone. These conspiracy theory people are so wrapped up in paranoia that they do not even realize that the green movement, when stripped down to its core mission, is to simply make the world cleaner and more sustainable.  Even if it was a conspiracy, which it is not, who cares?

If someone tells you that eating vegetables is better for your health than eating hamburgers, would you tell them they are crazy?  If a doctor tells you to quit smoking cigarettes because it is killing you, would you tell him or her that the science they are using to make their decision was flawed?  If someone tells you that reading a book is better for your brain than watching the latest season of American Idol, would you tell them they are nuts and call them conspirators?  To respond to such obvious points in such mind-boggling ways would be ludicrous.  Yet, this is what is done by the people who aggressively assert that global climate change is not occurring and we can continue industrializing to our conveniences in an unchecked manner.  Forget the reasons for why people want a cleaner world.  A cleaner world is simply a better place to live.

Let me give you a hypothetical scenario.  You are presented with the option of staying in one of two rooms for a night.  One room is filthy and the other one is clean.  The cost of the room is exactly the same, and except for the cleanliness, they come with the exact same setup.  Which would you choose?  Who cares how the one room became cleaner than the other.  It is cleaner, and therefore a more desirable choice.

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Would you choose the filthy room?

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Or, would you choose the clean room?

 

 

Forget the fact that the global climate change conspiracy theorists are comparable to the people who refused to believe the Earth was round.  I just cannot get over why people want to refuse to support ideas that promote a cleaner world with more trees, less pollution, and a more secure future.  I just don’t get it.

In case it is not clear by now, I am not using science to make my argument.  I am simply using logic.  If you need proof of global climate change, go to Nasa’s website and read this article.  Of course, if you do still need convincing, you are probably not still reading this because I have probably offended you by now.  Even if you are still reading this and you still need proof, you would probably tell me that NASA is bogus because they are simply the arm of the government and they are fueling the conspiracy.  God help you if this is the case.

Is there a massive global climate change conspiracy that intends to gain control via fear?  Anything is possible, I guess, but in this case, highly unlikely.  Before I leave you to go shovel this god-forsaken snow off of my driveway again (which I do the old fashioned way, thank you), I would like reinforce my logical argument by using a very old method.  It is called “Pascal’s Wager”.

For those of you not familiar with the amazingly simple philosophy, Blaise Pascal, who was a religious philosopher, among other things, created a rational argument for why an individual should believe in God.  The stripped down summary of it is that we have two choices.  One is to believe in God and the other is to not believe.  If we believe in God, and he exists, we will experience massive benefits in the afterlife.  If we believe in God, but he does not exist, we do not really lose much (one can argue we lose a little during life because we do not have as much “fun”). If we do not believe in God, and he does not exist, we gain a little bit during life via fun that the pious believer does not have.  However, if we do not believe in God and there is a God, well, we are screwed.  Therefore, we should believe in God.

God Exists God does not Exist
Believe in God Massive benefit via eternal life in heaven Overall “loss” during time on Earth is very small
Don’t Believe in God Massive loss via hell and/or absence from heaven for eternity Overall “gain” during time on Earth is very small

Now, let us generalize this to the idea of climate control.  Basically, if we believe that climate change is real, and we act accordingly, we will experience benefits to the tune of a cleaner planet that is more sustainable and, with hope, has healed a little bit.  If we believe in climate change, but it turns out it was a conspiracy, who cares?  It will still result in massive benefits to the tune of, you guessed it, a cleaner and more sustainable world.  If we believe, on the other hand, that this is all a hoax, and for some reason that turns out to be true, there are not massive benefits.  Maybe we were able to drive our trucks and SUVs without guilt and power plants can operate without so much oversight, but in the end, is that such a massive benefit?  Finally, if we do not believe that climate change is real, but it turns out to be true (which it already has), we are going to experience catastrophic consequences.  Therefore, believe in climate change and act accordingly.

Climate Change is Real Climate Change is a Conspiracy
Believe in Climate Change and Act Accordingly Massive benefit via a cleaner, more sustainable, and “healed” planet Massive benefit via a cleaner, more sustainable planet
Don’t Believe in Climate Change and Act Negligently Massive loss via a planet that cannot sustain human life as we know it Overall “gain” is very small

 

If you are someone who likes to generate arguments by saying that global climate change is not real, consider your motives for saying it, and consider the how believing in it can make the world a cleaner, more sustainable place to live.  If you are going to discuss the science of it in a diplomatic way, I encourage that, because positive discourse always leads to human advancement.  However, if you one of those attention-seeking antagonists who just wants to tell me that it is cold outside in the middle of winter, therefore climate change must be a hoax, do me a favor and keep your mouth shut.  I have enough to bother me this time of year.

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