September 3, 2012

How Conservatives Take on the Environment. ~ Richard Kujawski

Photo: eggs&beer

In my heart, I believe most true conservatives truly care about this world.

Some conservative Christians even think we should all be stewards of God’s creation—not using it like an ashtray or a toilet—so it bothers me that today’s conservatives do not care about the environment the way Teddy Roosevelt did, who started the national park system, or even Richard Nixon, who signed the Environmental Protection Agency into existence.

Here are a few recent environmental news stories that make me shake my head—which I have to do carefully when my head is in the megaphone….

Gun Enthusiasts Keep Starting Wildfires in Utah. This Mother Jones article cites local Utah news media that report at least one gunslinger who was sharpening his skills in outdoor target practice admits to having started a fire. Other second-amendment enthusiasts were seen in the area where

“The fires torched more than 500 acres of land around the nearby Jordanelle Reservoir and some nearby Forest Service land, sending plumes of acrid smoke across the valley and eventually into my window. Campers in the Jordanelle state park had to be evacuated, as did vacation home residents and guests at the ritzy St. Regis Hotel in Deer Valley, the playground of the ultra-rich where Mitt Romney once had a house.”

That’s just one example, so let’s put it in perspective.

In Utah, “Humans have caused more than 500 wildfires this summer. At least 22 of those have been set by people shooting targets, tin cans, and what-not off rocks in the scrub brush, where sparks from the bullets hitting rocks have collided with bone-dry brush and caused massive fires.”

The article continues:

“One large fire blamed on target shooters squeezing off rounds near the town dump in Saratoga Springs, home of tea party congressional candidate Mia Love, caused close to 9,000 people to be evacuated and forced Love to miss an event with soon-to-be vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan, who’d been raising money on her behalf.”

Is it just me or do some people seem willing to shoot off their nose to spite their face?

Romney Energy Plan Would Let States and His Oil Donors Drill On Public Lands. Earlier this year, Governor Romney said that he didn’t know what government-owned public lands are for. He has since figured out that they exist for drilling, as he announced in New Mexico recently.

As reported by ThinkProgress.org,

“It is an extreme proposal, especially from a candidate who admitted that he did not know the purpose of public lands. But an analysis of Romney’s top energy advisers, donors and the ideas of the American Legislative Exchange Council may shed some light on the origins of this proposal. A number of advisers and donors close to Romney own oil and coal leases on public lands, showing their business interest in opening these places to development.”

If you can’t give your friends thousands of acres of publicly owned land and mineral rights, why become President?

The Huffington Post List of Junk Science. Most of their items on this Todd Akin-inspired list actually are environmentally oriented, so enough about the distinguished legitimate legislator from Missouri—the Show Me state.

Of the six so-scary-they-are-almost-laughable news items on their list, two stood out for me.


“Rep. Sandy Adams (R-Fla.), who sits on the House Science and Technology Committee [with Todd Akin by sheer coincidence], introduced an amendment to the (already stupid) “Better Use Of Light Bulbs Act” that would “prohibit the use of funds for maintaining, developing or creating any Web site which disseminates information regarding energy efficiency and educational programs on energy efficiency specifically to children under 18 years of age. Children by the millions are, obviously, already experimenting with energy efficiency, a clear gateway to other, more advanced vices, like cheaper home heating bills and maybe providing a planet for their own children to live on.”

Second: Then there is Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), who claims that God himself has declared the whole global warming scare to be a “hoax.”

As Inhofe states in the following video,

“Well actually the Genesis 8:22 that I use in there is that ‘as long as the earth remains there will be springtime and harvest, cold and heat, winter and summer, day and night.’ My point is, God’s still up there. The arrogance of people to think that we, human beings, would be able to change what He is doing in the climate is to me outrageous.”

So it seems that we have indeed figured out how to change the world. But I wonder if we can ever change it back.

Richard Kujawski is the Managing Editor of Living Green Magazine which informs and educates readers on a range of environmental and lifestyle issues. They balance news stories with articles that highlight nonprofit causes and provide sustainable solutions for individuals, families, businesses, and communities. Their readers come in all shades of green, and want to create a healthy environment for themselves and others. Some people describe Living Green Magazine as the NPR and PBS of green websites.

Editor: Jamie Morgan

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