March 20, 2017
THOMAS W. SMITH: Confessions of a Climate Change ‘Denier’
There are two things necessary for a mass movement to succeed: true believers and a well-defined enemy. The enemy of the climate change mass movement is fossil fuels and the Industrial Age, with the “deniers” being the enablers of planetary destruction.
In the past, the term “denier” has been associated with that extreme group who denies the existence of the horrible, tragic historical fact, the Holocaust. Many climate change true believers want the public to put anyone who questions or disagrees with climate change projections in the same category as the Holocaust deniers. But one is a fact, the other a contested projection. Nevertheless, they have been quite successful.
Here is one of the definitions of “denier” found on the Internet: “a person who denies something, especially someone who refuses to admit the truth of a concept or proposition that is supported by the majority of the scientific or historical evidence: a prominent denier of global warming.”
Here is Hoffer’s warning on the role of the true believer: “where mass movements can either persuade or coerce, it usually chooses the latter.”
Skepticism isn’t denial; it’s science — but coercion isn’t.