When our class learned that a staggering ninety-seven percent of climate scientists believe global warming is anthropogenic, I think many of us had our minds made up then and there that global warming had to be caused by humans. If only three percent believed global warming is caused naturally, of course it was anthropogenic.
But then you compare that ninety-seven percent of climate scientists to the fifty-two percent of the public who believe humans cause climate change. That’s a difference of forty-five percent. Why?
Well, I know I temporarily forgot that the three percent of climate scientists were just, well, three percent. Our class watched The Great Global Warming Swindle recently, to see both sides of the argument. As a counterattack, if you will, to An Inconvenient Truth, the movie presents a convincing case, but when examined further, it falls apart. Maybe the public doesn’t know how fragile the explanation The Great Global Warming Swindle presents. Maybe someone grew up in a household that didn’t believe in global warming, and therefore doesn’t either. Maybe they just don’t want to accept the idea we might be damaging our home. Maybe we won’t ever know why half the public disagrees with the majority of the climate scientists.
I’ve grown up in a household open to new ideas and concepts. I’ve gone to two great schools and have met great people. I don’t have to worry about going without. I’m very, very lucky. Because of this luck, I’ve been exposed to both sides of the argument and have seen both sides of the argument torn to shreds. Perhaps, when people haven’t been exposed to all the facts, they revert to a natural defense: to pretend something isn’t happening and run away. Running may be an exaggeration, but I think we, the human race, oftentimes pretend things don’t exist to save us the pain of acknowledging the facts. I know I have several times. I think, at some point in our lives, we all have. It’s easier to close our eyes and fall asleep than open them and wake up to face the world.
I don’t know. Maybe I’m over-thinking this.