Hey, Let’s Argue About Climate Change!

So, do you want to argue? About anything?

Me neither.

I strongly recommend not arguing about climate change. If you argue against the “received orthodoxy” you will be labeled, and you won’t like the label. Apparently, somewhere in the world, this is a push to make “climate change denial” into a crime. Imagine facing a judge, and possibly going to prison because of your opinions.

Brace yourself, some of us may actually experience that. Climate change is not the only topic to argue about these days.

Here is an example of a scientific argument about climate change. Note; I’m not choosing sides, I just want to illustrate that we believe things, and we argue and disagree.

It’s our human condition:

If you want to know more, you could search for titles like “Climate: The Movie.” I don’t want to choose sides here, but there are different sides, and the debate is fierce.

If you search, you can find controversy, arguments, and words like “heretic” in discussions about climate change. We can also find the same patterns in arguments about sexual and gender orientation, the Israel-Gaza war, diet, and vegan vegetarianism versus meat-eating carnivore diets, and I just heard someone talking about fluoride in our drinking water.

If you are looking for a fight, there are options.

Truth is power, or power is truth. When one belief is tied to political power, or to corporate money-making, it becomes true; the received orthodoxy. We might believe that we are in a debate, with respect for the other side, but we should be careful.

I don’t recommend arguing about climate change, or any other orthodoxy unless you are willing to pay the price.

Imagine scientists working quietly, in an office, when the door bursts open, and armed soldiers come in to attack the heretics. Apparently, that happened, in Canada.

I once heard some advice, from a senior professor, in a large university. She told me not to criticize the information, but instead criticize the way people communicate. For example, when soldiers burst through the door, holding guns, they are communicating, and we can criticize them for how they speak.

There is just something about a loaded gun, that ends the argument. Their message is lost.

For example:

I don’t recommend arguing.

We are living in interesting times. It is common for people to believe they are correct, and then to believe that they can use any force, to make their point. Being correct [in their own minds] places them above the laws that restrict the rest of us.

This is not a new idea, it’s a human problem. I’m writing as a Christian, and I have seen religious people fall into the trap of being so correct that they can’t be corrected, and other opinions are not permitted.

Two thousand years ago, this was a problem, and we were warned:

The Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but must be kind to everyone, able to teach, and not resentful. Opponents must be gently instructed, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth, and that they will come to their senses and escape from the trap of the devil, who has taken them captive to do his will.” (2 Timothy 2: 24 to 26)

The way that we speak the truth is critically important. Evil people will not lead us to better places.

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