DEAR EDITOR:

The U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) issued an assessment report on Aug. 9 stating there are dire consequences coming from climate change which are inescapable, while there are other calamities which may yet be avoided if we (the world) take remedial measures now. It’s important that we all (including those of us who are not scientists) engage in serious conversations about the issue of climate change/global warming.

Such conversations should begin with an understanding of what the earth scientists and physicists are telling us. But, an issue is that many people who are skeptical about whether there actually is a problem think all scientists have the same attitude, all preaching to us about the dangers they see. That’s not correct. Scientists don’t have a completely monolithic viewpoint. While the vast majority are vocal about the dangers we face, there are others who don’t hold that view. Just look up two MIT professors: Kerry Emanuel, who sees great danger in climate change and Richard S. Lindzen, who has said for some time that the stated danger is overblown. No matter the starting point we have, we should look to the views science holds. There are enough scientific viewpoints to give a well-rounded assessment.

What we don’t need is to allow ourselves to be persuaded by folks who don’t have any more expertise in the field than we do. I’ve read that perhaps the most prolific commentator on global warming/climate change has been Rush Limbaugh. His comments were lopsidedly derogatory (all a “scam”; “environmental whackos”). We no longer have his voice, but now many politicians have taken up his mantra. Instead, we very much need to listen to the scientists and learn their viewpoints to help shape our own.

There is one statement, however, which Mr. Limbaugh got right. He said that global warming/climate change, even if it is an actual fact, will not destroy the earth, this third rock from the sun. When an asteroid or meteorite hit millions of years ago, Earth coughed and belched...and the dinosaurs disappeared. If the climate changes enough we may see coastal cities disappear, agriculture cease to feed the people, the polar ice melt, etc. If global warming/climate change causes Earth to cough and belch, while we may not survive, Mother Earth will.

We should all want to educate ourselves properly, for all our sakes.

Ken Thompson

Marietta

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(2) comments

George Don Spruill

I stand amazed at the people — like you, Mr. Thompson — who fall for the lie of MAN MADE climate change. The climate has been changing from the day God created Adam and Eve. But man has never and will never have the capability of changing anything. The people who believe this fallacy don’t believe in a sovereign God. Look at me, Ken Thompson! Pay attention! The Lord of the Universe, Who was powerful enough to to create the Earth out of nothing, to put the Earth in an orbit which is exactly where it must be for humans to survive…is going to make it possible for puny human creatures to raise and lower the temperature? No. It will never happen. But you and the other believers who fall for the Godless story by the Leftist fools (non-Believers) go ahead. I’ll wait over here and watch and listen to your blabbing ignorance.

Kenneth Thompson

In reply to Mr. Spruill's response to my letter to the editor regarding the issue of climate change/global warming, I have these thoughts.

For most of man's history, he has not had the ability to change anything about the climate; I agree. But, with the dawn of the Industrial age and now, the atomic age, it seems to me that man might just have the tools to devastate the planet. It's worth listening to scientists to inform our opinions.

In the Bible that we both read, I've read examples in the Old Testament where God spoke to His chosen people and told them, commanded them, to do or not do certain things. When the people disobeyed, He was disappointed and punished them. I happen to think that God has given us our intellect so that over time scientific thought could become an aid to our comfort. I see science as a gift given to us by God; not an alternative religion for us to follow. I believe God wants us to use the gifts He has given us, including science.

Further, when Jesus walked among us and was our teacher, He was asked what the greatest commandment was.. He answered: "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments." [Matthew 22:37-40] To me, it seems that doing our best to take care of our home, our planet, is a profoundly important way of loving ourselves and our neighbor. Even if, as you imply, Mr. Spruill, that we "puny human creatures" cannot affect climate change/ global warming, I believe we should all do the best we can for ourselves, our neighbors, our planet. And I believe that entails us learning what we can about climate change/global warming issues.

Ken Thompson

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