Friday, June 29, 2007

On Fact-Free Bigotry

[Ed. note: Having put a lot of trouble into finding out some actual facts, I thought I should re-post my rebuttal to Her-We-Don't-Speak-Of on the subject of Global Warming.]

I should probably let this go, but:

and GOD said blah too

. . . invites some examination. The implication is that Christianity (and I'm assuming here that the accusation is leveled specifically at the Christian Right) is led by people claiming that the Bible says something about Global Warming.

Let's look at the usual suspects:

Rick Warren

Sorry, no hits.

James Dobson

Only other people's accusations about Christianity, not about what Dobson actually says. But let's check the grand Poobah himself:

Jerry Falwell

BINGO, we have a winner! Except . . . when you read the statement, it's all about the science. Nothing about what God says or doesn't say about global warming, only that it's not part of the Great Commission.

Let's check the news at a centrist clearing house of what's happening in American Protestantism:

Christianity Today

Mmmm . . . this is interesting. Notice how all the editorializing is in favor of "doing something" to prevent global warming.

The articles give us some backstory. The National Association of Evangelicals (NAE) is on the global warming bandwagaon. Falwell and Dobson both have criticized the NAE leadership for this on the apparent grounds that the issue is outside of the NAE's mission. But still no word on what God says.

There is an organization called the Evangelical Climate Initiative, also on the bandwagon. Rick Warren is a member.

There is an organization called the Interfaith Stewardship Alliance that says that we ". . . should focus on helping the poor create wealth and providing them with clean drinking water and medical care. Efforts to fight global warming could ultimately harm the poor more than help them." But no claims that God sez there's no global warming.

But why check the facts? When you haven't darkened a church door since your early teens, and you hear somebody say, "THOSE people, they said that God said blah," and this happens to line up nicely with all your dearest prejudices . . . why spoil a good thing?

Ironically, at least one global warming skeptic blames the hysteria on religion: Michael Crichton. So it seems that no matter which way we go, Christians are going to get blamed.

I'm starting to see a pattern here . . .

3 comments:

Dizzy said...

Sigh. I told you on Bobvis. I was quoting the Bible verse often quoted by people I know, and in letters to the editor at newspapers where I've worked, "God gave man dominion over all the fish in the sea, the birds in the sky, the mammals that walk on land, and all living things..." Genesis 1:28

And I am still curious as to why the right wing is so insistent on global warming being some kind of liberal plot.

Dizzy said...

I meant to say, "I was referring to the Bible verse often quoted..." And remember, I grew up in a right-wing Christian household. I may disagree with you. Completely. But I do not have to make up stuff about right wingers. I was there. And I'm STILL on some rather interesting mailing lists...

Dizzy said...

And are we not speaking of me because I objected to homophobia? Or because I said that telling a joke about women being inferior "helpmates" wasn't... quite... the same as a joke about engineers? Or maybe because you invented a veeeeery long theory about women and feminists, using my blog as an example, and I refused to let your theories about me stand without comment? Because you've come after me, every time. You do realize that, right?