We need to declare war. Now.
We’re very accustomed to being at war. Scholars have found in our history there have been at most 18 consecutive years without being at war someplace for some reason. Most scholars go lower, sayings its five years. The difference comes in what counts as war; the Revolutionary War itself, Indian Wars, Shay’s Rebellion, the Civil War, police actions (Korea), undeclared wars, (Vietnam) or the obvious World Wars I and II.
The Afghan War is now about 20 years old, including Iraq, costing $2.9 trillion as of 2017 and with the loss of more than 2,400 American soldiers and 38,000 Afghan citizens. But we’ve been there, done that, even having a war against drugs.
Yet, I’m proposing a different kind of war.
One difference between the war I am proposing and those above is that the above, especially the major ones, had faces of evil. They had a common enemy to raise our ire, our patriotism, our desire to destroy: Hitler, Stalin, Mussolini, Ho Chi Min, Castro, Mao, Crazy Horse and Geronimo, savages or an axis of evil. The war I propose has such a face, but it is Pogo true in character. Remember Pogo? He said, “We have met the enemy, and it is us.” And who wants to fight us?
I am, of course proposing a war on climate change. I’m not going into the science of climate change herein, but there are those who hold obvious happenings are simply part of the natural historical pattern of cycles of hot and cold. The cycles are indisputable, and we may be in such a warming time. Even so, this does not eliminate human-induced climate change as a factor, even a large factor, as contributing to such change. Read the daily news of glaciers disappearing, huge chunks of ice breaking off the Arctic, Antarctic and Greenland masses, droughts around the world leading to immigration, huge wildfires, species habitats changing and so much more.
I repeat, human-induced change may not be “causing” these events, but it logically has an impact. A reason is yet needed for my suggestion to declare war on climate change, especially human-induced change.
Some important reasons/warnings follow.
From “The Hill,” talking of Exxon, one report noted “The corporation’s actions, however, demonstrate something else entirely: an extensive, expensive campaign to deny climate science, deceive the American people about the health and environmental ruin caused by global warming, and stop action by governments to address Planet Earth’s rapidly accelerating climate crisis.”
How much of the opposition to this comes from corporations, billionaires and greedy politicians? A very large percent of world societies and scientists say that humans are the main cause.
The Huff Post writes, “Every major scientific organization in the United States with relevant expertise has confirmed the IPCC’s conclusion, including the National Academy of Sciences, the American Meteorological Society, the American Geophysical Union, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. The list of international scientific organizations affirming the worldwide consensus on climate change is even longer (see List of Organizations). Several studies have shown that about 97 percent of climate scientists actively doing research agree that climate change is happening and is human-caused. and [9.]”
A study published in May, 2013 examined 11,944 climate abstracts from 1991–2011 in peer-reviewed scientific literature and affirmed that 97.1 percent of these scientists endorsed the consensus position that humans are causing global warming. There are those, including scientists, who say it’s all a hoax. And what a worldwide hoax and list of characters it would be. You must decide, and keep in mind you are playing the odds whatever you believe.
Finally, from Figueres, “It is in this decade that we will either reach a concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere that is so dangerous that we will not be able to manage the negative consequences for years to come and the increasingly destructive forces of nature will wreak havoc upon, not just infrastructure and biodiversity, but also on the ability of humans to live on this planet.”
Calling for such war is not for the future. It is needed immediately. I’m 81, and calling for such an immediate war is not likely to benefit me and Carol so much, but we have children, grandchildren and great grandchildren 10 and 7. What about you? Such a war will require drastic lifestyle changes seeking something other than “total victory” not immediately but in the future.
Often tough for people to do.
Bottom line, what’s the likely result if we make war and drastic lifestyle changes only to find human actions innocent? We’ll create new jobs, expand science and inventions, create currently un-thought-of technologies, new medicines and perhaps even bring the people of the world closer together.
Often unmentioned, we’ll reduce the 1.2 million annual asthma and bronchial cases attributed to air pollution. And if we don’t take action, and the vast majority of scientists are correct that human-induced climate change is real and severe? We’ll have more frequent, severe weather, disruption of food and transfer of materials, more disease and drought and fire, water quality and quantity will be changed, loss of species and more.
So what’s it going to be, expediency or tomorrow; our comfort today or protecting our children’s future?