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).😉
Main Topic: Honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr….The State Of Social And Climate Justice As Of 2021
Dear Diary. It’s been quite a horrid year since we last honored Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. on his holiday. The COVID19 disease became a true pandemic, affecting and killing hundreds of thousands of people of all races. George Floyd was killed in Minneapolis via an officer’s boot on his neck, prompting large Black Lives Matter protests worldwide. As a society we still can’t seem to get past the racist view that people of African decent aren’t as valuable or equal as Caucasians.
On positive notes since the last MLK Day, Joe Biden was elected to be President, ousting Trump and his fossil fuel loving policies. Kamala Harris will not only be our first female vice president but the first African American to attain that office, as well. During 2020 the cost of renewable energy continued to slide downward such that it appears that coal use to generate electricity will soon be a thing of the past. Perhaps we can insure a bright, green future sooner and not later during the mid-21st century as companies like Tesla give us better options to live.
Also politically, the U.S. Senate flipped towards the Democrats, clearing the way for Biden’s initiatives, mainly because another Georgia native son, Reverend Raphael Warnock got elected. And what has me thinking of divine intervention today is the fact that Rev. Warnock heads Ebenezer Baptist Church in my home town of Atlanta, which during Dr. Kings time was his church, also. Another African American daughter of Georgia, Stacie Abrams, was instrumental with helping to turn Georgia from conservative and racial red to progressive blue.
I’m very optimistic. After this pandemic is conquered and Trump’s minions run out of counter protesting gas, I see a nation continuing to slowly evolve into one of prosperous multicultural racial harmony, becoming again a democratic beacon to both guide the rest of the world so that they can emulate us. Also, we will learn to live in a green world in harmony with nature as we transition to renewable energy and materials that make our civilization tick.
Here is my MLK essay compiled and edited over the last few years:
Honoring Dr. King today I will repost and expound upon what I have been writing for years to honor Dr. Martin Luther King Junior on his holiday. In a good way it’s astonishing how fast the “Climate Justice Movement” has grown globally in the past few years. Three years ago nobody heard of the Green New Deal or any of the teenage and kids groups protesting such as Greta Thunberg. MLK paved the way, creating the blueprint for very effective peaceful protests for social justice and now climate justice, which are very much related. If Dr. King were alive today I am sure that he would be organizing climate protests, demanding social and climate justice.
Instead of presenting climate change findings today this short essay will address the spiritual health of a society that in general knows how to progress, as in the case with green energy, but lacks the spiritual and even moral wherewithal to do so. Today is Martin Luther King Day in the United States. Were MLK alive today what would he say about where the U.S. is on global warming? Not many people know that I am also a Baptist minister’s son following lock and step spiritually with climate scientist Dr. Katherine Hayhoe. Before my dad passed at the turn of the century he came to know how passionate I was on the climate change issue. What I failed to recognize before my dad’s passing is that people won’t change just by presenting facts alone, particularly if the road ahead is hard, and there are easier, more enticing paths to follow.
In the past four of years, particularly after the Popes Encyclical on climate change, I’ve come to understand that a society or country won’t do the right thing unless it is morally grounded. Science can open eyes showing all how creation works and reacts to different physical stimuli, but morally grounded leadership is necessary to implement good plans. Spiritual leaders and scientists can work in tandem to guide Earth towards a bright, green future.
I wrote the last two paragraphs during the early dark days of 2018 when Trump, Scott Pruitt and others were tightening their hold on the United State’s energy policy. In early 2020 I got a sense that the people of the United States have had enough of lies, particularly in the wake of Hurricane Michael and the California fires from 2018’s summer and fall, and the Midwest’s floods of 2019.
One of the failings of leadership is not recognizing that analytical knowledge can’t be separated from morality involving empathy and compassion. What would MLK think about Puerto Rico in early 2018 in the wake of Hurricane Maria? After moral authority is given by a leader like Pope Francis on the climate issue, we as a society need to move forward. Science sometimes opens Pandora’s boxes like splitting of the atom discoveries or the invention of the internal combustion engine. Spiritual leaders like Dr. King can guide planners to use new discoveries, to benefit all, particularly the least among us, while molding individuals to do right by their fellow man, guiding us to stay away from Pandora traps.
What is happening now is cathartic in the United States, opening wounds that need to be drained, exposing greed, corruption, and yes the evil of racism. In that respect, thank you Donald Trump. Globally, it has been shown that climate change will affect the poor first whether they be in low lying areas of Bangladesh or in coastal areas of southeast Texas recently affected by Harvey. Eventually the climate problem will affect all our progeny, no matter how rich or poor as exposed by science. Dr. King would access that the U.S. is suffering from a poverty of the spirit on many issues and levels but also on climate. We now know how to technologically fix the climate problem, yet we don’t have the moral fortitude to do so. In a sense, we are suffering from a poverty of the spirit not embracing truth as revealed by the best among us. (Now as of 2021 morally I think we are poised to do so.)
We did drain great political wounds here in the U.S. in 2020 with more healing to come in 2021 after the January 6th insurrection at the U.S. Capitol.
It’s oh so easy to side with the lie that all is well, and we can defile the planet with carbon pollution to our heart’s content. In 2016 we elected leaders who greedily wanted to take the short sighted, most profitable, easy way out regarding energy use. By doing so, as Dr. King stated, we aren’t walking on the Earth with our brother and sister nations towards a green, vibrant city on a hill.
Morally we have lost our way on the climate issue, but that is changing I feel on this MLK Day. I’m optimistic that after the elections of 2018 and 2020 every generation in the U.S. will do the right thing, joining the rest of the world, battling the evil behind climate change after the combination of much soul searching and more good science.
MLK, to my knowledge, had no scientific idea that the issue of climate would become so big later in the 20th and in the early 21st century. He would be horrified about the scientific truths that the Industrial Revolution have wrought. Nevertheless, I’m sure that he is looking down on us from heaven, smiling, knowing that despite a very hard road ahead, we shall overcome.
Here are some “ET’s” from Monday:
Here is some more weather and climate news from Monday:
(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.)
Now here are some of today’s articles and notes on the horrid COVID-19 pandemic:
(If you like these posts and my work please contribute via the PayPal widget, which has recently been added to this site. Thanks in advance for any support.)
The Climate Guy