Give thanks for troubled yet still-living planet

“If the facts are against you, argue the law. If the law is against you, argue the facts. If the law and the facts are against you, pound the table and yell like hell.”

— Carl Sandburg

No matter how much they pound and yell, the deniers of climate science are wrong.

The facts of climate change are clearly not on their side. Climate models using mathematics and basic laws of physics, thermodynamics and chemistry based on research in multiple data sets establish a 99 percent probability that climate change is fueled by global warming primarily due to manmade greenhouse gas emissions. This is the consensus of 97 percent of climate scientists around the world, based on published, peer-reviewed scientific research.

It’s easy to see the laws of nature are not on their side, either. On a nearly monthly basis, average global temperatures are setting all-time highs. The polar ice caps are melting, and sea levels are rising. Extreme weather is occurring. Oceans are acidifying. Flora and fauna species are moving or becoming extinct. Glaciers are receding, and fresh water is decreasing. More wildfires are burning. Tropical diseases are spreading beyond the tropics.

With the facts and the law against them, they pound and yell. They deny the facts and ignore the evidence by distortions using mockery and mischaracterizations, or resort to any number of logic fallacies, false assumptions, cherrypicked data or conspiracy theories.

The classic tactic is the false economic choice: “Do we address climate change, or do we promote economic progress?” Answer: Yes.

The most desperate lie of the pounders and yellers, the one that takes a page straight out of George Orwell’s “1984” by turning the definition of science upside down, is the charge that those who care about protecting Earth based on current science and scientific consensus are practicing some sort of cultlike “religion.”

This false charge deeply offends some people of faith, who see plenty of references to protecting, preserving and replenishing Earth’s environment in their Scripture. To them, practicing good stewardship is showing gratitude and respect to the creator.

Taking time on Saturday, Earth Day 2017, perhaps to join the noon march at the Lift Bridge or to offer thanksgiving for a troubled planet that is still sustaining life, is religious to the extent that caring for the Earth is a tradition of most every religion on Earth.

A Daily Mining Gazette editorial