A Conflict of Chauvanism and a Climate Change Deniers

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Death; its perverse skill invades everything. Your home, your dreams, everyone you love; nothing escapes its grasp. But modern medicine and technology have extended life, beyond what it has ever been expected to, and humans live in an era where death has lessened its hold, but this is not in any way permanent. Humanity, for all its greatness, has equal weaknesses. Bias and prejudice run freely in America, causing people to selectively believe things based on already set ideas and ignore important problems that threaten society, just to be ‘proven right’; and climate change is one of those things. In America, right-wing politicians using climate change denial as a source of political power is dangerous for the earth and America’s safety, but can be fixed by normal citizens not voting climate change deniers into positions of power and warning the public of the dangers of denial.

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Conservative Politicians use climate change denial to further their own popularity, causing citizens who watch media such as Fox News to deny climate change as well.

As is common knowledge, biased media, both Conservative and Liberal, show very different sides on climate change, but why is this? Citizens who watch one media over the other think their political opinion is correct, and the other wrong, but they cannot both be right; so what is the point of being so far on one side of an issue? The only reasonable solution is for politics- forcing ordinary people to believe in one side of climate change over the other will make those people think the other side is wrong, and therefore bad, keeping the people watching their news outlet. Studies show this works, as well, causing citizens to vote into office politicians who agree with them. One poll taken in 2013 by the Benenson Strategy Group shows that an overwhelming majority of people under 35 who consume liberal media would not vote for a climate change denier, while conservative consumers would. Liberal media often shows scientists and politicians who believe in climate change, and not often climate change deniers, forming definite opinions in those who watch it. Conservative media shows less scientists, and more climate change deniers. A study taken in 2011 shows the dangers of this: “As hypothesized, greater use of conservative outlets was associated with lower levels of certainty that global warming is happening… In addition, greater use of conservative news outlets was associated with lower levels of trust in scientists.” This is honestly terrifying, as the use of media to decrease trust in science not only leads to climate change denial; the recent Anti-Vaccination trend thrives off of that mistrust, to give one example, and that is dangerous as well. Creating people who trust in conservative media more than science is one thing that needs to change, now, as the earth is deteriorating faster and faster.

Climate change denial is stopping the United States from saving the earth, which spells imminent danger for both our country and the world at large. What is the problem with modern climate change? After all, climate change is natural, at least it used to be. Modern climate change is when the sea levels are rising faster than normal, and the world is becoming hotter by the year. It is when man-made factories and products release a large amount of Carbon Dioxide into the air, speeding up normal levels of climate change to the point where we could create an uninhabitable Earth. The world is, at the least, aware of this problem. Most countries are trying to fix it, but the US has been stubborn. Things changed during Obama’s presidency by a large amount, as he largely agreed with liberal media; the US entered several climate change deals with other countries, and started to improve. Conservatives did not like Obama, his presidency nor his policies, so naturally the climate change progress he made was bad too in their eyes. For example, President Donald Trump was quoted on Twitter saying “The people that gave you global warming are the same people that gave you ObamaCare!” in 2013, before his presidency, to mix the unrelated hatred of ObamaCare into the disbelief of climate change. This is not the only time he tweeted denying climate change- in fact, the number was close to 120 when he entered the presidency. When he took the presidency, he did what he showed he wanted to in the tweets and backed us out of these deals; and that has hurt us. A study done for Carnegie Mellon University shows that the annual average levels of solid particles and liquid droplets that are found in the air and are very harmful, called PM2.5, declined 24% during Obama’s presidency, then in the first two years of Trump’s presidency increased 5% again, and have only gotten higher. This lowers America’s air quality, and has even been associated with 9,700 premature deaths, and $89 billion in damages resulted from these deaths. Our President denies this is true, shockingly, and if it is, he says Global Warming has nothing to do with it. The president denies the melting ice caps, and the rapid change in temperature as well, as shown by his tweets. Largely, his behaviour is supported by the conservatives, as the media shares the same beliefs. The democrats and liberals do not support him; and some have even stood up to him. That is how the crisis will get solved.

While major politicians disbelieve in climate change, causing the problem to worsen, citizens who stand up to tell the truth is the only way it can get solved. Every radical decision in America’s politics has been made by protesting. America itself was formed by it. Women’s rights, Racial rights, LGBTQ+ rights; all of them solved by people angry enough to produce results. Why would it be different for our planet’s rights? Why should it be different? People are taking a stand already, and gaining support. One such person is Greta Thunberg, a 17-year-old from Sweden who, with her poignant speeches, has brought many people to her side. President Trump, recognizing this, aims many attacks at her, though she even has Asbergers’ syndrome, a type of Autism. Through Greta’s popularity, she was able to speak at The Davos Economic Forum very early in 2020, delivering a speech that has already helped teach more people what is happening. But she recognizes what global warming denial is- that it is politics- and called it out during her speech, “Our House Is Still On Fire,” with these words;

“And again, this is not about right or left. We couldn’t care less about your party politics...” she says; “What will you tell your children was the reason to… leave them facing a climate chaos that you knowingly brought upon them? That it seemed so bad for the economy that we decided to resign the idea of securing future living conditions without even trying?”

Her words are aimed at President Trump and others who give up the future for the present, attacking them back with logic. As a child, she understands what is at stake, and that is her future, and the future of everyone who will live long enough to see it. Yet, she is one of many. There are more than 300 million people in the US, just one strong fighter is not enough to tip the scales, and that is why the problem is not solved yet. In 2016, there were clearly enough conservatives to vote into presidency a climate change denier, so the problem needs to be solved through teaching the public the dangers and calling out the lies- something Greta Thunberg does well. Taking Greta’s advice, and increasing the amount of people that step forward to teach like her, will grant the Earth with its life and the future its vitality that we are lacking now, in 2020.

Conservative media outlets using techniques to force consumers to not believe in climate change is harmful for this country and the world in general, but can be fixed with regular people calling out the lies and tactics of the media. These media use this denial to further its popularity, enabling more people to become climate change disbelievers; this in turn accelerates the actual rates of climate change, which in turn causes more and more damage to every part of the Earth and the humans in it. Without being stopped, this could end in catastrophe. Yet it can be stopped, and already people like Greta Thunberg are trying to stop it by giving compelling speeches and encouraging others to do the same; but it will be hard. 

The Earth has a long recovery ahead, and it has to start now. If it does not, death’s fingers might finally enclose on the empire of humanity; and it would be our fault. 

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