Last updated 4/12/2021 at 2:11pm
People watch casually as the laser beam targets their merchandise. They dutifully follow their GPS, which relies on physics that Einstein developed. We send people to the moon. We have developed human insulin simply made by bacteria because we understand gene splicing. We watch TV, unaware that the electrons that are colliding with our screen and creating the picture are based on years of scientific research. We have cell phones that manipulate electromagnetic waves that allow us to speak to our friends or watch You Tube. We admire magnets that temporarily reorient the water molecules in our bodies and produce pictures that may save our lives. In less than a second a magnetic strip on our credit card transmits our financial information. In spite of this, we have climatologists who study the weather and climate and we apparently do not think they are as smart as the scientists who developed the above.
Although they present analysis of core samples of ice that go back thousands of years, and additionally chemical and statistical analysis of the changing atmosphere, we do not trust them — like other scientists? When they tell us that humanity is contributing to these changes the deniers scoff. Even the least scientific of us can understand that billions of people using fossil fuels could have an impact. Watching the glaciers melt on TV doesn’t require a Ph.D. I can understand why Republicans would distrust statistics especially after the last presidential election, but this is different. Rush Limbaugh famously said, “Global warming is the biggest hoax ever perpetrated on the public.”
Why would anyone believe him and not the scientists who study climate? Are these scientists not as clever as the ones who developed insulin, the laser beam, the iPhone, the MRI, the TV set? As my grandchildren would answer, “duh.”
How foolish we are when we deny science for the immediate temporary comfort of money and power.
Our grandchildren and great-grandchildren will look upon our graves and wonder how we could have been so dumb.
Gerald T. Kilpatrick