Written by†Laura Michelle Burns
In†a survey by the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, of 726 Republicans or Republican-leaning Independents, it was found that a slim majority of the participants (52%) believe that climate change is real. As a Conservative Republican, this statistic saddens me because it†reinforces†the historical stereotype that the GOP embraces the theory of “reflexive opposition” Ė or they simply ignore the reality of environmental problems.
This denial isnít because Republicans canít see the chaotic impact of climate change. They live in areas directly affected by the ravages of climate change just like their counterparts do. Our changing climate is†amplifying what has been happening for a long time, as exemplified by tornado season. Tornadoes cycle through the Midwest†every year. However, in recent years, the season has lead to an increasing amount of tragedy in the red states of Missouri, Alabama, Arkansas and†Oklahoma. In fact, just this week tornadoes touched down in†Oklahoma and Kansas,†leaving behind death, destruction and heartbreak.
What do you do if youíre a Conservative concerned about the environment? How do you talk to your friends and family about your convictions when they donít see eye to eye with you?
First of all, we must understand that all people want clean air and water, they are just unsure of how to get thereÖand how we got there in the first place! As concerned Conservatives, itís our job and a joy to educate our peers about climate change.
5 Ways To Talk About Climate Change With Conservative Republicans:
1. Climate change is real and itís happening now. Itís happening all over the world and the poorest people are the ones who are suffering the most. If Conservatives,†especially†those of the religious persuasion, truly care for their neighbors, climate change should be high on their list of priorities.
2. There are many causes that Conservatives can support, but caring for the environment envelops three of the key foundational†tenants†of this movement: trans-generational loyalty, the need for home, and the priority of local†economy.
3. Even though most Conservatives believe in God as the omnipotent designer of the Earth, it is important to note that as humans, we have the power to make our own choices. Believing in climate change isnít an insult to God,†itís an acknowledgment of responsibility!
4. By replacing our energy sources with†clean energy, we can reduce the human impact of climate change and therefore reduce the burden on the environment. Being good stewards of the Earth is a motto taught in Sunday School, and it doesnít end when you walk out the doors of the church.
5. And finally, teach your friends and family about conserving the environment. Start small with your children, capitalizing on their curiosity about the world around them.†Moms Clean Air Force provides all the important resources to help you arm yourself with the facts and teach your family to stand up to skeptics and climate change deniers!