“Because I Said So”
Jeremiah Jacques — The Trumpet — June 2015
What should be done to those who question the belief that human activity is causing catastrophic global climate change?
Environmental activist Robert F. Kennedy Jr. (nephew of the late president) recently said some of such people are “treasonous” and should be in jail with other criminals. Similarly, climatologist James Hansen, who was NASA’s top climate expert for over a decade, said questioners of the hypothesis should face criminal trial for “high crimes against humanity.” For Richard Parncutt, a professor at the University of Graz in Austria, however, prison is not punishment enough. In 2012, he said: “I propose that the death penalty is appropriate for influential GW [Global Warming] deniers.”
More mainstream activists generally don’t call for prison or execution, but still work to silence all questioners. In 2007, The Weather Channel’s climate guru called for stripping certification from unbelieving meteorologists. A Senate report that year showed that unconvinced scientists routinely faced threats and intimidation by proponents. In 2013, Reddit’s /r/science forum—which, with five times more subscribers than the New York Times, has become the front line of science-public interface—banned climate change questioners from discussions and said newspapers should follow its lead. A few months later, in his State of the Union address, United States President Barack Obama said that “climate change is a fact” and “the debate is settled.”
This desire to silence, imprison or even kill opposition raises specific questions about climate change. It also raises broad questions applicable to all of science. Continue reading here…..