<nitpicking> Despite of what Tyson may say, I think that the statement should apply to reality, not science. Science is just the best current approximation of how the real world works, but I don’t think that it can ever be declared to be absolutely, verifiably true. </nitpicking>
We let them control the narrative when we only focus on CO2 and climate change. Everyone can agree that pollution is bad. CO2 is only one component of pollution, and while we’re actually pretty sure that human-emitted CO2 causes climate change, we don’t need to fight that fight. There are so many other components in pollution that are demonstrably toxic. No one wants lead poisoning. No one wants mercury and arsenic flowing through our waterways.
The argument would be that increased output of the other components in pollution is bad, and the earth seems basically fine with the amount of CO2 we already have, so we might as well do our best to limit pollution.
This has been a very effective strategy for me. I’ve found it’s relatively easy to discredit organizations and political parties that are arguing in favor of poisoning communities. I can plant a seed with that approach even if I’m talking to NRA stalwarts who think Obama is a secret Muslim.
True, but you can’t expect much when the people feeding these suckers this nonsense themselves can’t understand the distinction between finding something to be justifiably unacceptable (e.g. the Electoral College handed America’s foremost public grifter and pathological narcissist the Oval Office despite the popular vote) and finding something to be unjustifiably unbelievable (e.g. that technological developments arise from scientific research, or that unchecked industrialisation has caused a rise in CO2 levels resulting in climate change).
I’m always amazed how few people seem to remember that man-made climate change was an accepted, mainstream belief for literally centuries…
america was once a paradise
of timberland and stream
but it is dying because of the greed
and money lust of a thousand little kings
who slashed the timber all to hell
and would not be controlled
and changed the climate
and stole the rainfall from posterity
and it wont be long now
it wont be long
till everything is desert
from the alleghenies to the rockies
the deserts are coming
the deserts are spreading
the springs and streams are drying up
one day the mississippi itself
will be a bed of sand
ants and scorpions and centipedes
shall inherit the earth
I hear you, and I’m with you 100%. However, the group currently in charge doesn’t buy it. They are not persuaded by the evidence that we’re headed for calamity, and persuasion is the only tool we’ve got.
I am proposing that we sidestep the rhetorical walls they’ve built against climate change and human-emitted CO2. They would be thrilled to slog it out with us there forever, while they continue eliminating emission control and reversing climate policy. We have to find a different angle.