I just got the visit of two charming ladies who asked me if I knew what climate change was, and how it should be stopped.
I recognized them as the seventh day adventists by their nervous smiles, their dowdy clothes, and the bibles clutched in their hands. I was nice to them. I like people who smile, even if they did remind me of two mice sent to knock on all the cats’ doors.
The woman who did all the talking told me that climate change was serious, and asked if I knew how to stop it.
I have to admit, that caught me off guard. “There are so many things we have to do,” I admitted cautiously.
She beamed at me, and read me a passage in the bible that said, “Our father who art in heaven, thy kingdom come, thy will be done,” and then told me earnestly that this meant that God would take care of climate change. All we had to do is pray. “When all the world lives under God’s grace, then he will make it a paradise,” she said. “We have to pray.”
I told her I was praying very hard that Obama would win the election because I was counting on him to tighten up emissions regulations and encourage developement of clean energy sources. In the meantime, I explained, I cut down on my driving, buy energy saving lightbulbs, recycle, and do my best to save water and energy. I said I was confidant in the power of prayer, and that if enough people actually prayed for Obama, there might be a glimmer of hope in the world for climate change.
“I understand that you have different opinions than mine,” said the woman smugly.
“That’s a start,” I said cheerfully.
She shrugged and left, after giving me one of her paphlets.
So, being open minded I gave the pamphlets a glance. Points in favor: they cited millions of years of climate change, so they aren’t creationists. The paphlet puts the blame on the greed of humans (in a way quite true). And on the disregard for others. (Again, true when you look at the ecological damage caused by oil and chemical companies in third world countries.)
A lot of the points were true. I was starting to think we might have more in common than I thought. But instead of doing something concrete about the mess we’re in, these poor people are falling on their knees to pry to God to help make the world a better place. And here is where our opinions differ. They believe that if everyone follows the same moral compass they do, we’ll all end up in paradise. What they don’t seem to understand is that morality is the right hand of hypocracy. And greed is always just around the corner, waiting to move in and take a bite. There are many men and women in positions of power who give lip service to morality, and then grant drilling rights to fragile land, who encourage waste and who don’t care if the poor and the meek don’t have health insurance, a retirement fund, or a roof over their heads.
Relying on God to do your work for you is a pretty shabby excuse for doing nothing. God is like Santa Claus – we all pretend he’s there, but we know who really buys the presents.
Well, I’m off to town and I’m car-pooling to save gas, so I have to go pick upi my friends.
Have a great day!