The Cliff of Climate Chaos

Cliff

Yes, both going full speed straight ahead off a cliff and not slowing down enough or turning enough to keep from going off a cliff eventually will end up with the same result of driving off a cliff, but if given a choice between speeding up or slowing down and turning, the latter is better as it gives you a little more time to realize or be convinced that more drastic measures are needed to avoid the precipitous fall to death.

In relation to the climate crisis, voting for Trump is speeding up and driving straight off the cliff. In contrast to Trump, some of the Democratic candidates have plans on climate change that if implemented would give us a decent chance of not driving over the cliff at all, but Joe Biden’s plan does not slow us down enough or turn us away from the climate crisis cliff quickly enough, which is one of the reasons why he is not my first choice to be the Democratic nominee for president.

If given a choice between Trump and Biden, however, I will always vote for slowing down over speeding up. A Biden presidency would at least give us a chance to avoid the very worst, whereas the re-election of Trump takes us quickly to the point of no return to a livable climate as all of his policies and the persons implementing them are driving us recklessly over the cliff to climate chaos.

In a Biden presidency, we would at least have an Environmental Protection Agency with some actual concern for the environment, and we would have senior climate science positions filled with actual climate scientists. We would have climate assessment reports that we could trust and an administration that would not be openly hostile to all environmental regulations. This would at least give us a window of opportunity to keep yelling to the collective driver of our societal car to slam on the brakes and take much more radically evasive action to avoid the cliff of climate chaos.

Voting for a third party in this next presidential election or sitting out the election because one thinks Biden is not progressive enough, in effect becomes a vote for speeding off the cliff. I will continue to work to elect a Democratic nominee with the strongest climate crisis action plan, but if Biden ends up as the nominee, I will do all I can to elect him while simultaneously doing all that it is possible to get us to slow down and turn more quickly to avoid the cliff. I believe in the very core of my being that another term with Trump would eliminate the possibility of avoiding a future of climate chaos and unspeakable suffering for both people and the planet.

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About Mark Y. A. Davies

Mark Davies is the Wimberly Professor of Social and Ecological Ethics and Director of the World House Institute for Social and Ecological Responsibility at Oklahoma City University. He is the Executive Director of the Leadership, Education, and Development (LEaD) Hub North America of the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry of the United Methodist Church and an Oklahoma Humanities State Scholar. Mark has published in the areas of Boston personalism, process philosophy and ethics, and ecological ethics. Dr. Davies serves on the United Methodist University Senate, which is “an elected body of professionals in higher education created by the General Conference to determine which schools, colleges, universities, and theological schools meet the criteria for listing as institutions affiliated with The United Methodist Church.” He and his wife Kristin live in Edmond, OK in the United States, and they have two daughters. The views expressed by the author in this blog do not necessarily represent the views of Oklahoma City University or the United Methodist Church.
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1 Response to The Cliff of Climate Chaos

  1. MomzillaNC says:

    The same people will vote the same way again. There’s no logic in choosing a third party when such real and imminent threat to our way of life looms so large as the Trump regime. It boggles the mind how his followers refuse to see this. Worse, they believe he speaks to all their fears: fear of immigrants taking their jobs, fear of undocumented immigrants; fear of their jobs going overseas; fear of losing their healthcare, etc. But, they practically worship a man who uses the legal worker visa system to excess; is proven to – not only employ undocumented immigrants – but have his management staff actively help undocumented workers remain in his employ for decades; manufactures all his products in China; purchases all his luxury condo and hotel accouterments from overseas; is actively trying to take healthcare away from millions upon millions of Americans, etc. His followers are literally voting for the stereotype boogieman who is an in-real-life actualization of their fears.

    Then, we have people watch Mueller’s speech on his own report, then completely set it aside to preach Sarah Huckabee Sanders’ lies about that speech. The cognitive dissonance in their heads is so extreme it makes MY head hurt!

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