Chicago Sun-Times

Les­son of COVID-19 and wild­fires? Vote for politi­cians who re­spect sci­ence

- Climate Change · U.S. News · Politics · Natural Disasters · Ecology · Disasters · Donald Trump · United States of America · Wisconsin · Hansen, WI · Hales Corners, WI

Pres­i­dent Trump has pro­moted a fa­tal­is­tic view of both COVID-19 and cli­mate change.

Re­gard­ing COVID-19 deaths, he has said: “It is what it is.” The United States has less than 5% of the world’s pop­u­la­tion, but more than 20% of its coronaviru­s deaths.

With re­spect to hur­ri­cane dam­age in Texas, Trump has stated: “You’ve had tremen­dous storms in Texas for many decades, and for many cen­turies, and that’s the way it is.”

And now, in the face of con­clu­sive con­tra­dic­tory ev­i­dence, Trump is blam­ing the dev­as­tat­ing West­ern wild­fires pri­mar­ily on for­est man­age­ment, dis­miss­ing cli­mate change.

In re­al­ity, it’s both. To quote the physi­cist Phillip B. Duffy, pres­i­dent of the Wood­well Cli­mate Re­search Cen­ter: “Fun­da­men­tally, the sci­ence is very, very sim­ple. Warmer and drier con­di­tions cre­ate drier fuel. What would have been a fire eas­ily ex­tin­guished now just grows very quickly and be­comes out of con­trol.”

Gov­ern­ment is in­ca­pable of deal­ing with crises when it ex­clu­sively chooses ev­i­dence that fits its be­liefs.

Earth Sci­en­tist Julien Emile-Geay has as­serted that the 2020 election is “a ref­er­en­dum on objective re­al­ity.” This is ex­em­pli­fied by Trump’s Or­wellian claim that the U.S. has the low­est COVID-19 mor­tal­ity rate in the world.

On Nov. 3, let’s vote for can­di­dates who re­spect sci­ence.

Terry Hansen, Hales Cor­ners, Wis­con­sin

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