You’ve felt the exasperation. You’ve been there. We’ve ALL been there.
Perhaps it’s with a co-worker two cubes down. . . Maybe it’s with a fellow parent at your kid’s school. . . Perhaps it’s with an acquaintance who asks you, “What do you do for a living?” and without thinking, you blurt out, “Oh, I’m a political blogger.”
Maybe it’s at Thanksgiving Dinner and it’s with your conservative Uncle Henry who insists that a young whippersnapper like you (a 38-year-old) is still stuck in youthful idealism and “eventually you’ll see the light” and vote Republican.
Whatever the situation is surrounding it — the scenarios truly are endless — it’s typically the same frustrating conversation that leaves you with that lingering, “WTF just happened here?” feeling. You know what I’m talking about.
You attempt to have a conversation with a climate change denier.
Upworthy and Unilever teamed up together to produce a video which exemplifies what it is like to talk someone who denies climate change. Watch it and then share it with your climate change denying friends (and don’t forget Uncle Henry) and perhaps they will see how absolutely ridiculous their denial of climate change truly is. It really is ridiculous, Uncle Henry. Get with it!
It’s been nearly a decade since Al Gore gave us “An Inconvenient Truth,” and perhaps it was naivety on my part, but I never dreamed there would be so much opposition to doing something that would protect life on earth for our children’s children and their grandchildren. But, alas, nearly 10 years and millions of dollars later, here we are.
Hell, denial of the science surrounding climate change is so common, nearly all the Republican candidates running for president have it as a talking point on the campaign trail. During the summer, Hillary Clinton released a political ad pointing out the denial by conservatives (and it’s one of those funny, yet sickening, paradoxes — you want to laugh and cry at the same time — check it out if you haven’t seen it).
So, for those family members, fellow parents, co-workers and acquaintances that need a lesson in climate change – send them this post. Maybe it will help.
7 Facts Showing Climate Change Is Real
1. 2014 was Earth’s hottest year on record. 2015 is on track to beat that record. (Source: NOAA)
2. While the earth’s climate has changed over time since the beginning of time, the amount of change observed in the last 50 years is substantially increased. “Most of the warming of the past half century has been caused by human emissions of greenhouse gases.” (Source: EPA)
3. The Arctic sea has a lot less ice than it had a decade ago. “This year’s low is 350,000 square miles (910,000 square kilometers) below that [the record low in 2005].” (Source: NOAA)
4. For 650,000 years, CO2 in the atmosphere never increased beyond 300 ppm. Since 1950, it has increased to 400 ppm. (Source. NASA)
5. The last decade has been the warmest on record according to four international science institutions. “All show rapid warming in the past few decades and that the last decade has been the warmest on record.” (Source: NASA)
6. 97 percent of climate scientists agree that global warming is caused by human activities. (Source: NASA)
7. The average temperature in the United States has increased by 1.3°F to 1.9°F since 1895, but most of the increase has taken place since 1970. (Source: GlobalChange.gov)
These are just seven small, yet convincing, data points pertaining to climate change. The science is vast and complex. But, even in the simplest terms, climate change exists. Isn’t it frightening that we have an entire field of candidates running for President of the United States of America that disagree with the 97 percent of climate experts?
I “get” why the politicians use this talking point. I get it. They receive money from the fossil fuel lobby, so it’s corruption run amok. These (mostly conservative) politicians know very well that climate change is real. They have no interest in losing their campaign contributions (and in some cases, their own profits — George W. Bush is an oil man after all) in an attempt to change something for which they will not truly face the impact of in their lifetime. The damage being caused today won’t REALLY impact them — they will be long gone before drastic effects are felt. So, those dollars are worth far more to them than the lives of four or five generations into the future.
But, what I don’t get is the average American making the choice to believe a Donald Trump or a Marco Rubio or a Ted Cruz over NASA or NOAA or any of the other scientific institutions around the world. How does that happen? Since when do we take the words of politicians over the words of actual scientists in regard to science?
No, conservative friends, I can say without a doubt that you’re wrong on this one. You’re really, really wrong. And, sadly, your willful ignorance is going to harm future generations of the globe. Please learn the facts and vote for the future. Life on earth depends on it.
Featured image via video screen capture