US evangelical rift on global warming widensIt's also a slap in the faces of the late Jerry Falwell, Pat Robertson, and James Dobson
A group of more than 40 leading Southern Baptists has widened the divisions within the powerful American evangelical movement over global warming, denouncing the denomination's stance as "too timid" and warning that its cautious response to the environment is seen around the world as "uncaring, reckless and ill-informed".
Leading members of the religious right have insisted that climate change is not one of "their" issues, unlike abortion or stem cell research, and distracts attention from other political concerns. The Cornwall Alliance for the Stewardship of Creation, founded by the Colorado-based evangelical James Dobson, propounds the view that higher levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide "would benefit plant growth" while action to reduce energy consumption would harm the economy and damage "societal well-being". It quotes the statistic that the Kyoto treaty would lead to 1.3m job losses in a year among black and Hispanic Americans. Concerted attempts have been made to marginalise pro-environmentalists among church leaders.Religion jumping in the bed of science? Must be a miracle. It does present a little conundrum, though. While people are beginning to trust in the science behind Global Warming, the evangelicals still couch it in terms of the church:
"The Lord spoke to me in that class through my theology professor, who said we receive revelation from God not only through His word, the Bible, but also through His creation, nature. When we destroy His creation, it is no different to tearing a page from the Bible."Whatever. The main point to understand is that the minds of the congregations were changed by something more than their thick-headed leaders. It was science that walked on these waters.