Thursday, June 28, 2018


Climate skeptic prof suffers hate speech, bias and intolerance at University of Delaware

A recent article by the editor-in-chief of the school’s student newspaper proclaimed “Green Dragon slayer for hire, in a geography department near you: To members of the Cornwall Alliance, environmentalists are satanic ‘Green Dragons,’ sent from the bowels of hell to threaten world order and harm the needy.”

Caleb Owens’ article links tenured UDel geography and climatology professor David Legates and his Christian faith to “far-right American evangelicals,” fossil fuel funding and the “anti-environmentalist” Cornwall Alliance. Legates is pilloried as a “listed speaker and trusted affiliate” of the Alliance.

The article relies heavily on Iliff School of Theology sociology professor Antony Alumkal, whose book Paranoid Science Owens asserts “charts the long and complicated relationship between science and the American Christian evangelical movement, examining the intra-religious tensions that have accompanied various strands of science denial, including the intelligent design and anti-environmental movements.”

Expanding on this, Owens falsely claims “far-right American evangelicals have been responsible for some of the most radical opposition to scientific positions regarding topics such as climate change and evolution, working in close tandem with secular free-market idealogues.” [sic]

Underscoring his bias and intolerance, a cartoon accompanying the article depicts a cute, frightened green dragon carrying a “recycle” placard being attacked by members of a Christian mob dressed in nineteenth century garb straight out of a Frankenstein movie, and brandishing a cross, torch and pitchfork.

In his imagined coup de grace, Owens claims that “groups like” Cornwall have received “indirect” funding from fossil fuel companies, such as Exxon Mobil – and “government officials and climate activist groups have questioned Legates’ funding and motivations, possibly traceable to fossil fuel industries.”

The “Green Dragon” DVD series prompted the title for the Owens article, and some of its misguided criticisms. In his own Dragon lecture, Legates says segments of the scientific community improperly engage in “post-normal science,” altering or distorting facts to advance political goals. Owens suggests that this is not happening and claims Legates is in denial about human-caused climate change.

However, even Dr. Mike Hulme, a former member of the IPCC and University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit (and an evangelical Christian), said post-normal science focuses on “the process of science – who gets funded, who evaluates quality, who has the ear of policy makers” – rather than on what should be an honest, transparent, evidence-based scientific method. Hulme called the IPCC “a classic example.”

Moreover, like many other scientists, Legates has explicitly affirmed that climate change is frequent and recurring, and people play a role, especially at local levels but even on global scales. What he denies is that carbon dioxide emissions are the primary driver and manmade change is likely to become disastrous.

Finally, as to funding, Legates and Beisner have told me neither they nor Cornwall ever received “one dime” from any fossil fuel company. Owens’ slick, crafty suggestions that they did could have meant he has a job waiting for him at MSNBC – except that the claims are libelous, especially in the context of the headline claim that Legates is “for hire” by Cornwall or an oil company.

The University of Delaware cannot let this biased, deceitful, defamatory hate speech go unchallenged – especially in an official campus newspaper, housed in a UDel building, funded by Delaware taxpayers.

SOURCE


1 comment:

Bird of Paradise said...

The Earth Worshiping Eco-Freaks will drive all skeptics out of America if they had their way we would all be living in grass huts living a miserble primative life