Rhetoric About Disaster Abounds
August 31, 2011 by Sam Rolley
Following the weather and geological events that surprised residents along the East Coast last week and gave mainstream media a topic to inundate the public with for several days, ideas about links between natural phenomena and humanity are surfacing everywhere.
First, former Vice President, current millionaire, filmmaker and amateur climatologist Al Gore (who also claimed in 1999 that he invented the Internet while in Congress) spoke out on climate change last Friday.
While being interviewed by Climate Reality Project collaborator Alex Bogusky, Gore linked climate change denial to blatant racism and ignorance, according to Huffington Post. In discussing why environmentalists must win the conversation about global warming, the activist told a story:
I remember, again going back to my early years in the South, when the Civil Rights revolution was unfolding, there were two things that really made an impression on me. My generation watched Bull Connor turning the hose on civil rights demonstrators and we went, “Whoa! How gross and evil is that?” My generation asked old people, “Explain to me again why it is okay to discriminate against people because their skin color is different?” And when they couldn’t really answer that question with integrity, the change really started.
There came a time when friends or people you work with or people you were in clubs with — you’re much younger than me so you didn’t have to go through this personally — but there came a time when racist comments would come up in the course of the conversation and in years past they were just natural. Then there came a time when people would say, “Hey, man why do you talk that way, I mean that is wrong. I don’t go for that so don’t talk that way around me. I just don’t believe that.” That happened in millions of conversations and slowly the conversation was won.
The former Vice President went on to suggest that industrial agriculture and the consumption of meat is to blame for climate change and natural disaster, according to FOX News.
Then, over the weekend, GOP presidential hopeful Michele Bachmann suggested to a group of about 1,000 people in Sarasota, Fla., that God was addressing politicians directly with Hurricane Irene and the earthquake, reported the St. Petersburg Times.
“I don’t know how much God has to do to get the attention of the politicians. We’ve had an earthquake; we’ve had a hurricane. He said, ‘Are you going to start listening to me here?’ Listen to the American people because the American people are roaring right now. They know government is on a morbid obesity diet and we’ve got to rein in the spending,” said Bachmann.
Analysts at the School of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University have also weighed in, claiming that climate change — whether man-made, created by God or just a naturally occurring global phenomenon — increases the likelihood of civil war conflicts in coastal countries, according to the International Business Times. The theory comes from a study recently published in the science journal Nature.