Editor’s Note: This week’s blog post is a guest piece from someone who was following last week’s piece and had both experience and expertise in science and sustainable agriculture to respond to the climate change naysayers responding to the article, yet wished to remain anonymous. I offer it here in a very lightly edited version as an excellent example of #AssertiveSpirituality. Go team! May we all continue to do what we can where we are with what we’ve got to make the world a better place for us all by standing up against the toxic crap, wherever we find it. –D.S. Leiter, Founder, Assertive Spirituality
Dear Climate Change Naysayers responding to Assertive Spirituality’s last blog post:
Last week Assertive Spirituality shared a blog post about Greta, a young passionate girl who is trying to change the world for the better. The article was about speaking out and the ways that people silence others and then how people silence, or self-censor, themselves.
Despite the topic of the blog, many people came out to mock and argue that climate change is not real. I’m pretty sure they didn’t even bother to read the article, but were just reacting to the title. I would like to address some of those commenters.
Against the Demonization of Progressives
So my first point is this: writing something like “Bullsh*t” or “F*ck you, liberal communist demoncrats” is not doing anything to make the world better.
Just stop it.
The Need for Openness to Being Educated
Second, I found it fascinating that most people ardently arguing that there is no such thing as climate change or that science isn’t real, etc. seem to be, overwhelmingly, high school grads at most. I forget, growing up as I did surrounded by parents and relatives with advanced degrees, that not everyone learned how to read science journals or interpret statistics or make informed observations based on reliable data.
Not everyone has had the privilege of learning from professors who have spent their lives studying their topic of interest.
While I need to remember that, it would also be helpful if those of you who grew up without those benefits realized that your experience and education is limiting your ability to understand. Just because something is beyond your comprehension doesn’t mean it’s not real.
The Heart of This Response: the Need to “Live Like the Amish” to Have Any Say about Climate Change
Next, to the brilliant argument put forth by more than one person, that unless we are “living like the Amish” or “completely off-grid” our concerns about the catastrophic environmental impact and global climate changes are invalid.
To that, I would like to say “bullsh*t.”
But, since that isn’t actually making the world a better place, I’ll try to be more specific.
Growing Up with Educated Sustainable Farming
Because my father was a nuclear chemist, and because my parents were educated and ethical, they chose to live on a farm and grow all of their own food and try to live a zero waste lifestyle.
Because my father studied the effects of radiation during a time with multiple countries were setting off “test” nuclear bombs, my father learned to farm organically, using companion crops and helpful bugs long before that was popular.
He figured with all the environmental damage being done to our bodies, we could at least try to minimize the poison we ingested. He also built a passive solar structure onto our old farmhouse to heat it in the winter, since we only had a woodstove for heat.
Continuing the Legacy
After years of being humanitarian workers abroad, my husband and I returned to the family farm to care for my father at the end of his life.
Knowing Climate Change Is Real Through Sustainable Farming
Now we are continuing the legacy of sustainable farming.
We dry our laundry on a clothesline and raise our own organic food and pastured meats. We dry herbs and produce for winter in our solar dehydrator. We purposefully choose to purchase things that don’t destroy our environment.
We have a farm calendar, kept year by year that goes back into the middle of the last century. We can actually watch the climate (not weather) changing by comparing things like first and last frost, rainfall, and other data.
The fact that we have access to electricity does not make our observations or our efforts less valid. That either/or thinking is destructive.
What the Trolls Got Completely Wrong
Thinking that one has to completely give up driving a car in order to be thoughtful and intentional about using fewer fossil fuels is wrongheaded. Thinking that because a person has access to a computer, they don’t have any ability to consume fewer goods is wrongheaded.
Why I Am Thankful
I am thankful to have had the privilege of growing up with educated and thoughtful people surrounding me.
I am grateful for my time living in a remote third-world area where I learned how little people actually need to survive and also saw the devastating effects of poor choices made by governments and corporations.
Every day I am grateful to have the opportunity to live this lifestyle where the rhythm of chores and planting and harvest time keep us closely tied to the most basic necessities.
Why I Grieve
I am horrified and terrified of what the future holds as our country moves toward taking away regulations that kept our water and air clean.
I am sickened by the blatant ignorance that shouts “there is no global climate change” as we see bigger and more harmful weather events happening every day around the globe.
I am heartbroken to see so many people completely unmoved by the harm their actions cause to the most poor and vulnerable people on our planet.
To Assertive Spirituality
Please, Assertive Spirituality, keep giving people tools they need to stand up and speak on behalf of the vulnerable and oppressed.
To the Trolls
If you are one of the people who seem to delight in arguing or want to casually dismiss the concerns of millions of people, could you take a few minutes to at least open your mind to the idea that your reality, your limited understanding, might not be completely comprehensive?
Here are a few websites that might help enlarge your thinking:
A Concerned Farmer
More Help with Being Assertive
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