No one can really question whether or not the climate is changing. In fact, that is why the more popular title has become “Climate Change” instead of “Global Warming.” While there is some (small) scientific doubt as to how much of the recent warming is a cycle or a permanent trend, there is no doubt that the climate is changing. More importantly, even if humanity is not directly responsible for all the change, we know we are responsible for many localized environmental issues. The problem is that the way we are ALL talking about the environment is keeping us from dealing with it.
It’s Not as Important Who is to Blame, It’s Important WHO Can Fix It.
Probably the biggest point of contention is whether or not humanity is to “blame” or who is the “cause.” When environmentalists say “man is to blame” then “the man” reacts and gets all defensive. The most potent argument seems to be “there is nothing man can do to destroy nature, ” an argument made popular largely by Rush Limbaugh.
Right-wing Christians like this argument because of its sanctimonious nature: God made nature, and humanity is insignificant to God, so there must be no way humanity can hurt nature. However, this is false-humility disguising irresponsibility. God gave humanity dominion over the earth (Gen. 1:26) and this world is ours to tend. Even if we aren’t “causing” all the problems, we can work together to overcome them.
You Think We Did Nothing to Hurt Nature? Doing Nothing DOES Hurt Nature.
Humanity has a special relationship with nature. Gardeners, farmers, landscapers, and veterinarians understand and experience this relationship. The harsh reality of sin, fear, survival, and struggle isn’t just something humans experience, all nature grieves together. When man and nature come together, we can create abundance, or at least that is our potential.
If we are not taking responsibility for the world around us, you can be sure we are harming it. If we are not actively managing our resources, our waste, and our ecosystems, then you can be sure they are falling into decay. Anytime we act in arrogant independance from our environment, we are creating circumstances which will hurt the earth and humanity together.
Forget Conservation, Let’s Build an Even BETTER World
The worst argument made by the left-wing, is that things were better the way they “used to be.” It is the left-wing’s delusion like “Leave It to Beaver” is the right-wing’s delusion of the “old days.” No one ever wants to go backwards, and we never can. We can only move forward, or dig in our claws and go forward slower. The real case for environmentalism shouldn’t be conserving the world “the way it is, ” but pushing for making an even better world.
There is no reason, if we were conscientious and intentional with our technology and innovations, we can’t improve nature and humanity at the same time. I have seen people learning to grow trees out of houses, using algae to clean rivers WHILE producing fuel, and farms using the interrelationships of different species to keep crops healthy instead of using chemicals. The future could be really cool and awesomely beautiful at the same time, we don’t have to pick, we just have to work together instead of pointing fingers.
Shame and sacrifice are poor motivators for change. The more and more environmental advocates keep shaking their fingers at industry and society, the more they will get resistance and deaf ears. The better arguement for better fuels, cleaner energy, and innovation is BECAUSE WE CAN! It is our virtues which should motivate us to change, not our vices. Improving the world we live in wouldn’t just serve nature, it would serve us. Everyone benefits from healthy environment.
It’s Our World
This is our world. We will destroy it, or we will improve it, but it WILL change. Climate change is inevitable because change is inevitable. We can seek to understand it, work with it, and be a part of it. The message of Christ is that we belong to each other, what we do as individuals affects those around us. What we do as communities affects our eco-systems. What we do with our eco-systems affects our environments. What we do with our environment affects the planet. We are all connected, and we have to live for one another. How can we do anything else?
What if we create a better world for nothing? Comic by Joel Pett.