Tuesday, May 15, 2012


Conservative Republicans have been accused of being anti-science. The Texas state education board resists the theory of evolution and insists on equal space in textbooks for religious based theories of the creation of the earth. Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott has taken the state’s fight against pollution controls calculated to protect the ozone layer and guard against global warming to the federal court system. The lawsuit claims that there is not adequate science to prove global warming and that the EPA has no authority to regulate emissions of CO2.

While on the presidential campaign trail, Governor Perry, when asked about global warming, said there are opposing views in the scientific community concerning climate change, and he further indicated he was very skeptical about whether or not global warming really existed as a result of pollutants in the air.

Frankly, I believe the reason for such conservative opposition to well-established scientific fact lies not so much in disrespect for science, but simply is a money issue. Industry has hired multiple millions of dollars worth of lobbyists. They have recruited some scientists on their payroll to raise serious doubts about climate change or global warming being related to industrial pollution.

One only has to hark back to the nationwide issue related to smoking which went on for several generations. For years the tobacco industry produced scientists to testify solemnly that tobacco smoke was not the cause of medical ailments such as cancer, emphysema and other heart problems. It is almost indisputable today that these protestations from cigarette manufacturers were phony arguments to simply delay the inevitable attack on a very profitable industry.

It seems the same is true with the issue concerning global warming. As long as there is non-acceptance of scientific facts--about increased hurricanes for example, or the risks of doing nothing--as announced by the vast majority of worldwide scientists concerning this issue, there is a political basis for opposing stringent pollution controls on industry. Pollution controls cost industry money, and in turn lessen profits. Unfortunately, the lack of adequate pollution control causes sickness, disease and even death among Americans exposed to such pollutants that fill the air as a result of many industrial endeavors.

I submit the cost of cleaning up industrial emissions pales in comparison to the cost of human misery that uncontrolled emissions bring to us.

It’s time for Americans to wake up to scientific fact and quit buying into conservative politicians’ who are disparaging of citizens concerned with the environment as a bunch of nutty tree huggers.

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