Sunday August 4th… Dear Diary. The main purpose of this ongoing blog will be to track United States extreme or record temperatures related to climate change. Any reports I see of ETs will be listed below the main topic of the day. I’ll refer to extreme or record temperatures as ETs (not extraterrestrials).😉
Link Between Climate Stress And Some Mass Shootings
Obviously I’m writing this post or essay in response to the awful mass shootings that occurred yesterday in El Paso. You may think that the title of this post is a real stretch, but not really after reading the following logical lines.
As I’ve stated numerous times horrible incidents happen after a series of bad dominoes fall. Each domino or factor usually has to be in place in order for a final set outcome to occur. The dominoes falling in this case were Central American drought leading to the need for increased migration to the U.S., which inflamed to a certain degree racial tensions. Inflamed racial tensions caused one hateful young man to snap then act. The manifesto left by the suspect in El Paso was an end result of a twisted mind spewing venom against vulnerable Latin Americans, some which he knew were trying to or already had moved north of the U.S. border.
It’s very hard to judge just exactly how much that A) climate change has had an effect in moving X number of immigrants towards the U.S. or B) how much racial tension stoked by fear from the U.S. political right has been caused by increased Latin American numbers. Here we see, though, the beginnings of what has become the Central American drought caused by another climate domino, the last great El Nino, which some climate experts have said has spurred mass migrations:
Long term drought is no stranger to Central America and the southwestern U.S. It probably is the one of the main domino factors that led to the fall of several burgeoning Indian civilizations. Take the case of the Anasazi:
Climate models do forecast increased drought and stress on water sources throughout the southwestern part of the North American continent. Can we blame the current Central American drought totally on climate change? No, but I’m sure that the roulette wheel of weather is stopping more on the drought slot in a warming world.
I do see a disturbing worldwide trend. If people become desperate enough to migrate from their home to another land, racial or societal friction is bound to occur. One case in point is the Irish after the potato famine in the 1800s. Despite no real racial differences Irish immigrants were deemed by most Americans of European heritage to be part of lower social classes through the early part of the 20th century. In the case of late 20th and early 21st century Mexican and Central American immigrants, a sense of being superior by some white northern Europeans has left many Latin Americans on the lower end of the class totem pole or economic ladder. Many whites are now feeling more threatened by an increasing influx of Latin Americans, but just a scant few are spurred by fear towards acts of violence. That scant few may only increase as migrant numbers swell, though. It only takes one deranged person to pick up an automatic weapon, causing considerable, awful carnage.
Don’t forget too, desperate hungry people are more apt to grasp the tool of crime to survive. Some immigrants will take up arms. This tendency stokes more fear among those whites who feel that they have a lot to lose in a rapidly changing society.
Can the climate crisis lead to more hate? I think so as dominant cultures are forced to mingle with immigrants escaping both drought and flood, whether they be coming to the U.S. from south of the border or from the Middle East into Europe due to African and Asian heat and drought. Let’s call this “climate stress” on society. Walls won’t fix this problem and, as we have seen this weekend, political fear used to bring about their raising can be a motive for more hateful, destructive violence.
Let’s all work to at least pull one domino “sideways” so that there will be less chance for more mass murder committed upon less fortunate Central Americans. By stopping emissions there will be less social climate stress which will, I hope, limit mass carnage by any radical elements among us. To be fair, we don’t have two Earths, one with a cooler more stable climate and another more volatile and hotter, to statistically judge how many lives could be saved by significantly lowering emissions. Logic would dictate, though, that a cooler Earth would be a safer Earth for us all.
Here is more climate and weather news from Sunday:
(As usual, this will be a fluid post in which more information gets added during the day as it crosses my radar, crediting all who have put it on-line. Items will be archived on this site for posterity. In most instances click on the pictures of each tweet to see each article.)
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Guy Walton- “The Climate Guy”