REVERENCING THE EARTH
By Donald Sutherland
Objective evidence vs. ideology
Increasingly, I fear for my grandchildren — and for yours. Prior to the election of the Harper government, I thought we had at least a fighting chance, with enough shoulders at the wheel to inch our way back from total ecological collapse. Now I see a government ideologically based, determined to silence scientists and environmentalists as misguided distorters of truth.
points to examples such as Canada’s withdrawal from the Kyoto agreement “without
any rational plan or achievable national plan to battle carbon pollution,” and
Minister of Natural Resources Joe Oliver branding local environmentalists
and First Nations as “foreign radicals” because they had
the gall to question the economic and environmental government rhetoric
favouring a largely Chinese-funded pipeline. He says “The data-antagonistic
Harper government has so muzzled federal scientists that an editorial
in Nature magazine called for setting Canada’s scientists free,” and
notes that Tory senators are threatening to revoke charitable status
of groups who speak out for the environment or against subsidies supporting
Nikiforuk asks, from where do these ideas come? His answer, “The
prime minister belongs to the Christian and Missionary Alliance, a church
that believes that the free market is divinely inspired and that non-believers
are lost.” Further, Nikiforuk points to the Cornwall Alliance as
likely to have Harper’s ear. They are reported to question mainstream
science, doubt climate change, view environmentalists as a “native
evil,” champion fossil fuels and endorse libertarian economics.
One Cornwall declaration describes environmental regulation as an impediment
to God’s will.
Nikiforuk quotes a book published by the Alliance called Resisting the Green Dragon, painting environmental groups as “one of the greatest threats to society and the church today . . . The Green Dragon must die . . . no excuse to become befuddled by the noxious green odours and doctrines emanating from the foul beast.” A series of 12 half-hour videos is promoted online as a biblical response to “one of the greatest deceptions of our day.” Environmentalism is described as the new religion, devastating to the world’s poor, threatening sanctity of life and targeting our youth.
Sutherland, PAg, MBA, is a restorational justice practitioner and Circle Facilitator in Winnipeg.