Reality based community applauds Pope on Climate Change

This post was written by marc on June 18, 2015
Posted Under: Letters to the Editor

I want to express my appreciation for Pope Francis taking a positive stand on environmental issues and putting the focus on this world and how we as humans are going to live on this planet in a sustainable way. I think in many ways this Pope has set a positive example of what a religious leader should be doing, which includes leading people to live in harmony with the natural world.

But although I appreciate the Pope’s concern about what we can do to improve life on this planet for future generations, there is one big thing that would make a huge difference that the Pope isn’t addressing – and that is global population control. Without population control no amount of lifestyle change or green technology will save us.

We don’t actually have a global warming problem, what we have is a population problem with a global warming symptom. Global warming is just one of many problems we have to face and most all of these problems are caused by too many people.

We live on a rock that is 24,000 mile around at the equator and it’s not getting any bigger. The rock – the Earth – is our space ship. It’s a big space ship and it’s easy to forget that this planet is a lifeboat in an otherwise hostile universe. If we were living on the International Space Station we would have a more direct understanding of conserving resources knowing that just on the other side of the wall is the vacuum of space and temperatures 450 below zero. Air and water are as precious here as they are up there.

Anyone with grade school level mathematics knows that if you have a finite amount of space and the population is increasing then overpopulation is inevitable. No matter how many people you think the Earth can sustain – pick and number – if the population keeps increasing we will hit that number. I believe that we are already over the limit and that if we could reduce the world population to 2 billion we would be better off.

Humanity is on track to go from 7 billion people to 11 billion by the end of the century making the population problem even worse. During this period we need to get away from getting our energy from burning stuff and move to wind and solar power. However, if we cut down all the trees and black top out farmland to build cities it will become increasingly difficult to live. Imaging every road with twice as many cars. That’s the world our children will live in if we don’t do something about it.

Although the Pope is calling on other people to act to address the environment, it is really the Pope himself who can personally make the most difference. The Catholic Church has been against birth control for centuries. Being against birth control might have made sense 1000 years ago when you had to have 6 kids so that 2 would live, and the average life span was less than 30. But we now live in a world with less infant mortality and life spans of 80 and what made sense 1000 years ago no longer applies to the Reality we live in today.

So as the Pope calls on the United Nations to address global warming – I call on the Pope to set an example for change. I call on the Pope to help stop global warming by reversing the Catholic Church’s opposition to birth control and to call on Catholic families to limit the number of children to two. Without stopping population growth we are just delaying environmental Armageddon, not preventing it.

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