172 thoughts on “Earth Day”

      1. Congrats! Though I’m pretty sure my KJV says “dress it and keep it.” In the original Hebrew this means that the women should wear dresses (Hay-men?), and man should discover and keep whatever he wants. Not exactly a librul god we have.

    1. I actually have heard things about this, it was a critical video about how the religious right is screwing up how we deal with the world. There really is no reason to save the earth, and protect our environment if the world is just going to end in a few years anyway. To me, it’s selfish. They force their beliefs on everyone, and make us live with an even more screwed up world because of irresponsible, uncaring policy.

      1. I first heard this philosophy expressed by James G. Watt, the bug-like man Ronald Reagan appointed to be Secretary of the Interior (in charge of managing National Parks, wildlife sanctuaries, National Forests, and all other federal land).

        Quite a few of us were disturbed by Mr. Watt’s approach to his job. A petition for Reagan to fire Watt collected more than five million signatures, which was a record in those pre-Internet days.

        In popular culture, Watt is probably best remembered for banning the Beach Boys from performing a free Independence Day concert on the National Mall, saying they attracted “the wrong element” and encouraged drug and alcholol use.

        “In 2008, Time magazine named Watt as one of the 10 worst Cabinet members in modern history.”

  1. I have never, ever understood this attitude from people who believe that their God created the Earth and mandated them to be stewards of it–would they want their children treating their home that way? However, I have certainly heard it a lot.

    1. Amen. It seems completely counter productive and hypecritical to declare with one voice that God created and God redeemed then to say it is a throw away world.
      And when one looks at the Beatitudes and Colossians 1, it becomes even more puzzling. The meek will inherit the earth and Christ’s death was for all of Creation–if we believe Christ has redeemed all of Creation and promises to give the earth to those who are meek, how do we justify destroying the earth?

        1. thanks Scorpio for thinking it is just a problem of hermeneutics but as Deacon’s Son points out it is an issue of genetics. My mind simply cannot fathom the mysteries of fundamentalism. I am stuck in the mire of rationalism and logic.

    2. Fundies don’t emphasize “being stewards of” the earth nearly so much as they emphasize “having dominion over” the earth – taking what you need from it. Of course, anyone with any experience in long term planning would realize that resources eventually run out, and, oh yeah, the rapture’s scheduled for any day now, right? When’s that next blood moon? :rolleyes:

    1. No-one (apart from a few neo-pagans) really “worships” the earth though do they?

      Most people (even environmentalists) pay more homage in a worshipful sense to their football team, or their own possessions than they do the natural environment.

      1. Nope. Environmentalists “worship” the earth about as much as somebody frantically trying to put out a grease fire in their kitchen before it burns down the house can be said to be “worshipping” their house. That’s probably the way most environmentalists would see their current relationship to the earth.

        1. That’s true too.

          Associating environmentalism with “mother earth worship” is one of the tricks that fundies use to dismiss it.

          When one’s home and family is threatened by pollution or other environmentally related phenomena, one soon changes one’s tune!

        2. Notquiteso, that’s a very good analogy.
          I don’t worship my house, but I know if I don’t take care of it, I’ll have no warm, dry place to sleep.

          I don’t worship air or water, but I know that if they are contaminated, I will get sick and die.

          I don’t worship animals and plants, but I know that the earth needs them to stay healthy, and I know that to disrespect God’s creation is to show contempt for God.

      2. I would dare say there are a few, albeit small enviro terrorist groups that I would say cross the line into worshipping their cause, but that isn’t the majority of conservationists/environmentalists.

        Sure, we may not be able to destroy the earth without God’s hand, but we can make it a pretty miserable place to live.

  2. There’s also the issue that fundies tend not to believe there’s even any environmental problems to be worried about. When you’ve demonized scientists, that tends to happen. And hey, it snowed a lot in the corner of the country where I live last winter, so the earth can’t possibly be warming, right? Right?

    1. Right! and I don’t know why the media keeps switching the terms global warming and climate change. So flip-floppy!

      Seriously, though. I love how all the fundies I know still call it global warming and in the winter gave “proof” of how it was false (it’s so cold here). They can’t wrap their heads around the (now proven) idea of more extreme weather fluctuations.

      1. Or the fact that the rest of the world experienced a warmer than normal winter. We were the odd country out last winter.

        We are borderline environmentalists and always had a deep respect for nature. I don’t know if that has to do with our Native American heritage or not but my dad used to tell me things the Indians did that just made sense. Controlled forest fires to burn out the undergrowth so lightning strikes wouldn’t be quite so devastating for instance. He said he could remember as a boy seeing the mountains on fire but was assured that the Indians knew what they were doing.

    2. I am not a scientist.

      I’m not a journalist.

      I am a skeptic.

      I remember the trend 40 years ago that was all the rage: Global Cooling. It was everywhere, science…journalism. That’s what we little crumb-crunchers were taught in elementary school, and watched on PBS (or whatever).

      Now it’s all about global warming.

      I do know that the earth has a natural cycle in tempature variations, and I do not believe that we little humans have the power to change that. Sure, I can park my suburbans in the garage. That would save me a boat load of legal tender. I’m just not convinced that our collective consumption is going to bring on the disasters that some are warning us about.

      Now, can we make a difference in how we steward our resources so that our conservation produces a better quality of life? Sure do! I remember growing up in the Denver area in the 70’s and contending with the “brown cloud” and the subsequent air quality alerts. Changes were made in emission standards for both companies and motor vehicles. The difference we see today is remarkable even though the populations along the front range has more than doubled I believe.

      This all seems to me to be “The flavor of the month.” What will we be talking about in 20 years?

      Now, as far as the ranting of fundy preachers about environmentalists, I agree! And I rarely heard my former fundy CEO carefully consider stewardship as it was taught throughout scripture. It was always about preaching against Obama and for our rights as Americans.

      B.R.O.

      1. Totally agree with you B.R.O. I’m an HUGE advocate for stewardship but I’ve never seen any definitive evidence for enviromental activism or global warming.

        God told us to care for the earth and we should….but it does seem arrogant of us to assume that God’s good creation is so weakened by our actions.

        1. Bibb – Read up on the ozone layer and the banning of chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs). The use of CFCs caused the “holes” in the ozone layer and the ban of CFCs is reversing the trend. The Antartic ozone level should be back to 1970s levels by around 2060. So yes, human actions can affect God’s creation. Both good and bad.

      2. I can respect that, what gets me I guess is the outright denial simply because scientists said it, and they cannot believe scientists at all.

        1. Bingo!!! Fundy’s are terrified of science….unless it’s crappy science from Kent Hovind.

          This comes from their VERY WEAK faith and fear that someday science will prove Christianity to be false.

        2. “This comes from their VERY WEAK faith and fear that someday science will prove Christianity to be false.”

          I think you hit the proverbial nail on its proverbial head there, Bibb.
          That’s it exactly.

        3. Fundies are also terrified of anything that they cannot control. Given their futile efforts to achieve a closed, totalitarian system, they become too emotionally fragile to handle the idea that there really are things beyond their control and the idea that their cherished cultural rituals may in fact have real-world consequences.

        1. The famous London “pea soup” fog disappeared once the London area implemented anti-air-pollution laws.

        2. Lakewood, yes.

          I went to Central Lakewood Elementary right next to the Junior and Senior High Schools. They closed the elementary school down after the 1976-77 school year.

          That’s where I remember the brown cloud the most.

        3. Breaking Away sez:
          “Aww … but the London fog is legendary … boo!”

          I know. The mysterious misty streets of the Sherlock Holmes stories are no more.

          But I think the Londoners dying of lung diseases back then found it less charming.

      3. Your entire comment really hangs on one phrase “I do not believe that we little humans have the power to change that”. Since you are not a scientist, what do you base that belief on?

        1. Faith.

          The earth seems to have done well under both human and natural disasters.

          Nuclear detonations.
          Volcanos.
          Floods.
          Hurricanes.
          Droughts.
          Detroit.
          Disease.
          Famine.
          Wars.
          Oil Spills.

          But, like you wrote, I’m not a scientist.

          B.R.O.

        2. But that makes you the same as the fundies you decry, after a kind. You believe things will be ok, therefore you walk away from responsibility, and you are not actually interested in what the science has to say.

        3. That’s not what I said. If you would have read my previous posts you would see that.

          I argued for responsibility in every case, hence stewardship. Sometimes I used sarcasm or satire. Either way, I’d ask that you not but me into a box.

          As far as sciend goes, I’m not arguing against it if it’s real science. Fundies aren’t the only people who have problems in that area. Faith cuts both way and we need to be honest about that.

          B.R.O.

        4. How does faith cut both ways?

          Also, I said “after a kind” – since your comment implied that God will protect us in any event, which seemed to imply a disregard for any real threat. I do acknowledge your mentioning stewardship.

        5. The earth has demonstrated that it recovers itself quite nicely when dealing with human and natural disasters, that’s what I wrote.

          As far as “God will protect us in any event,” I would say, “sure, why not?” If you don’t believe in God, then you won’t believe that. Nevertheless, we have been given the responsibility of stewardship of the resources given to us by, yes, GOD.

          Faith cuts both ways:

          It is by faith that we believe the scriptures in the account of creation.

          It is by faith that we believe in the “Big Bang” theory of 40 some whatever billion years ago.

          It cuts both ways. Creation is believed by faith. The Big Bang of 40 billion years ago is believed by faith.

          Were any of us there in either event?

          NO.

        6. I am sorry, BigRedOne. I am going to say this, but I am not trying to be unkind. I was once in your shoes, made the same arguments, and didn’t realize that I didn’t know what I was talking about.

          And please understand. I am not upset at you. I am upset with those who have taken your ideas hostage with nonsense.

          You don’t know your science. You don’t even know what science does, or how it makes its conclusions. You need to learn. Possibly it is one of the most important things you need to learn.

          It isn’t about faith. It is about evidence.

          Okay, you can say that we scientists “have faith” that the evidence is the evidence and that we can take it as being trustworthy. You can say that we “have faith” that cause and effect are related. You can say that we “have faith” that present processes operated in the past.

          But those are reasonable assumptions. Would you have us discard all evidence? Would you say that cause has no relation to effect? Or that everything is magic? Is the Book that says that a third of the stars of heaven will fall to the earth more of an expert witness in astronomy than all of our observations?

          You would be terribly upset if your bank refused to provide you with details on what happened with your accounts. You would want evidence for their assertions. You want evidence when it suits you.

          Now as I said, I used to talk much like you. But I was challenged by my boss to learn what I wanted to talk about. I was given science books to read. When I read them, I started getting angry.

          You see, my view of science had been what I had received from the pulpit, from creationist literature, from a wide variety of other “Christian” sources.

          I found out that the Creationist writers deliberately lied. Yes. Deliberately. You can’t contrive some of the falsehoods they did without it being deliberate. They lied about science. They lied about the motives of science. They lied about how scientists work. They lied about the terminology, deliberately mixing it up so that it couldn’t make sense.

          When I discovered this, I almost lost my faith. To build a house of lies to protect “the truth of the Scriptures”? How could lying honor God? How could anything needing to be protected by lies be worth preserving?

          Science isn’t what you think. You don’t know what you think you know.

          I hope I have not offended you too greatly. But I lost a lot of years to this nonsense. The sense of betrayal has not lessened over the years.

        7. First, rtgmath, thanks for being kind.

          You wrote:

          “You don’t know your science. You don’t even know what science does, or how it makes its conclusions. You need to learn. Possibly it is one of the most important things you need to learn. ”

          I’m not saying science isn’t important. I consider science a major discipline in understanding our world. It’s about evidence and testing explanations and predictions. When an event or explanation cannot be tested, then we theorize. Conclusions we reach must be, at least in part, by faith.

          You cannot re-produce the theories of creation or the Big Bang. Can’t be done. You or I were not there.

          “It isn’t about faith. It is about evidence.”

          I defer to my previous comment. What cannot be tested, if you are going to believe it, must be acknowledged by faith if you are going to hold it as truth.

          “Okay, you can say that we scientists “have faith” that the evidence is the evidence and that we can take it as being trustworthy. You can say that we “have faith” that cause and effect are related. You can say that we “have faith” that present processes operated in the past. ”

          Were did I say that? I was very narrow in my examples: Creation and the Big Bang. I mentioned nothing about “you scientists.” As a matter of fact, I didn’t know you were claiming to be a scientist.

          “But those are reasonable assumptions. Would you have us discard all evidence?”

          Of course not, that is not what I even inferred. Evidence is evidence.

          “Would you say that cause has no relation to effect?”

          No, I don’t think that is what I would say. What did I say that communicated I believed that cause has no relation to effect?

          “Or that everything is magic? ”

          I’m not sure what you mean by this. Magic? Was my statement about the earth’s resilience inferring that I believe in magic?

          “Is the Book that says that a third of the stars of heaven will fall to the earth more of an expert witness in astronomy than all of our observations?”

          I know what you doing here. I don’t believe I mentioned any scripture in particular. I could be wrong. I’ll have to go back and see what you are writing about here.

          “You would be terribly upset if your bank refused to provide you with details on what happened with your accounts. You would want evidence for their assertions. You want evidence when it suits you. ”

          Straw man.

          “Now as I said, I used to talk much like you. But I was challenged by my boss to learn what I wanted to talk about. I was given science books to read. When I read them, I started getting angry. ”

          Okay. I’m game. What “science books” can you refer me to? Also, what is the point? Am I to read merely to read, or is this supposed to cause me to respond (effect) in a particular way?

          “You see, my view of science had been what I had received from the pulpit, from creationist literature, from a wide variety of other “Christian” sources. ”

          You assume I’m ignorant. There are many things I do not know, to be sure. Your assumptions about me and what I “received from the pulpit” is not at all what I’m trying to communicate here.

          “I found out that the Creationist writers deliberately lied. Yes. Deliberately. You can’t contrive some of the falsehoods they did without it being deliberate. They lied about science. They lied about the motives of science. They lied about how scientists work. They lied about the terminology, deliberately mixing it up so that it couldn’t make sense. ”

          This may be true. I’ll have to take your word on it since I’m not well-read in creation science.

          “When I discovered this, I almost lost my faith. To build a house of lies to protect “the truth of the Scriptures”? How could lying honor God? How could anything needing to be protected by lies be worth preserving? ”

          I almost lost my faith when a so-called man of God exercised his authority over God’s people for the sake of tradition. Twisting the scriptures for the sake of maintaining decorum and the status-quo

          “Science isn’t what you think. You don’t know what you think you know. ”

          Now I’m getting weary. Again, I wasn’t trying to define science or destroy it. I was stating that two extremes must be taken by faith: Creation and the Big Bang. PERIOD. Science cannot prove either.

          “I hope I have not offended you too greatly. But I lost a lot of years to this nonsense. The sense of betrayal has not lessened over the years.”

          My offense is only in the reading into my statements what I did not say. However, I am listening. I have not arrived at the place where I want to be, but I am listening. In order for me to change my mind about something, I must be convinced by clear and convincing proofs. If this is your sceince, then bring it on, just don’t patronize me. My former fundy CEO did that with great skill.

          Finally, regarding the fundies I decry, it’s not all about creation science vs the plethora of other sciences; it’s about the life of the New Testament church vs the human traditions that have shackled the life out of the church. The church is the living expression of Jesus Christ in the earth and there is much to be said about this life in the New Testament.

          All this other stuff is a distraction to me right now.

          Thank you, rtgmath, for taking so much time to respond to my comments and set me straight. I should really learn to pick my fights.

          B.R.O.

        8. And then, sometimes I don’t know when to shut up. A hazard of being me.

          But I would say that the scientific evidence for the “Big Bang” is conclusive. We do not have all the data, but we are trying to get as much as we can. It is not just a “by faith” assumption.

          There has been a lot of work done related to that field for over 70 years, even before we called the event the “Big Bang.” No one is just making stuff up. The science is sound. What changes our minds is evidence. And increasingly, predictions made on the basis of the “Big Bang” demonstrate themselves to true in our observations and in the lab.

          So I do not mean to weary you. And I probably shouldn’t have opened my mouth or made assumptions. But if you think the “Big Bang” is a matter of faith to scientists, you do not understand what they operate on.

          My regards. And my apologies.

      4. The coming “Ice Age” reported back in the 70’s was not widely accepted science. It just got picked up by the media and beaten to death because of it’s sensational sounding nature. You can find a nice explanation below.

        Skeptical Science Link

        The consensus regarding global warming in the scientific community is staggering. That’s the only word that seems fitting.

        As I always point out, if you don’t believe the community of people most knowledgeable about the subject and who have spent their lives studying it, then what exactly are you basing your views on? For most people, they’re just basing it on “their gut.” I’ll take science over your “gut” any day of the week.

        1. AMEN! My husband is a chiropractor and it is amazing how many people he talks to know everything about chiropractic but have not spent one day studying it like he has!

      5. Alaska is at the melting edge of global warming.

        Invasive plants and crop pests that we never used to have to worry about are gaining a toehold because hard freezes don’t come as often as they used to. Permafrost is no longer perma-. North American species so foreign to this area that local languages don’t even have names for them are breeding here. Sea ice is thinning out and drifting away, leaving coastal villages at the mercy of winter storm surges that never used to reach the shore.

        It’s happening. It’s happening faster than it ever has before in the life of humankind. It’s correlated directly with extremely high levels of human-produced atmospheric pollutants. This is not a natural cycle. Humans put a blanket on the Earth and this is the result.

      6. Ahh, yes “global cooling”

        Actually, that “theory” was more popular among the media and had very little support among the scientific community. Hardly any scientific papers were published in journals which posited cooling at that time (in fact global warming WAS being discussed in the 1970s). In fact, the very papers that posited this “cooling” [due to aerosols in the atmosphere blocking radiation from the sun] had trouble determining whether or not that cooling effect would be outweighed by the already known warming effect of CO2 (and other greenhouse gases).

        My point; Let’s not confuse science with the media. Comparing climate change (aka global warming) with the “cooling” fad from some 1970s newspapers [newsweek, time] is bad judgement.

  3. Straight out of the Book of Genesis, which fundies proclaim can only be read literally:

    31 God saw all that he had made, and it was very good. And there was evening, and there was morning—the sixth day.

    If God saw his creation as very good, who are we to mess it up?

    1. There is a Manichean tendency in Christian Fundamentalism that sees the material world as evil.
      This often has more influence on Fundamentalists than all the Bible passages that say God’s earthly creations are good.

      1. Because fundy theology is a syncretic blend of the worst of Christian theology in general, it makes sense to them to subscribe to a sort of “total depravity” theory when it comes to “the world” but reject the same idea when it comes to themselves! And yes, fundies are little more than modern-day gnostics when it comes to their dualism. They have just realized that you don’t need the pseudo-intellectual gloss to attract believers!!

  4. I remember while attending Fundie School, we staged a Earth Day protest across the street from a local high school’s earth day celebration. Later in my fundie years we would gather at the church and chop down and burn trees on earth day.

    Separation not only consist of not doing what the world does, but having a equal and sometimes excessive reaction to what they do.

    1. “Separation not only consists of not doing what the world does, but having a equal and sometimes excessive reaction to what they do.”

      I agree 100%!!! That is so typical of fundies today!!! Interestingly, Bill Gothard endorses this idea as well. Drawing on his very sketchy understanding of Hegel’s dialectic, Gothard presents a chart at his seminars in which he draws a line down the right side of the page representing God’s law and then draws little bubbles drifting off to the left representing compromises that have taken us away from God’s law. He then draws another bubble on the line and says that God wants Christians to radically embrace Gothard’s teachings regarding the law of God and to reject all cultural norms which are, by definition, far from God’s will. This chart is an important one in Gothard’s teachings because it allows him to justify the aggressively reactionary and idiosyncratic lifestyle that he promotes.

  5. I remember participating in the first Earth Day in 1970.
    Our class took a hike to the nearest river (4 blocks) and picked up trash on the way. Symbolic, but the need to be a prudent user of our natural resources and not taking our world for granted is a lesson that has stuck with me ever since.

  6. I’m always fascinated that for the more “conservative” minded people, environmentalism = climate change, as if climate change is the only thing that environmentalists are concerned about. To the assumption that we are too small to really have an impact on the planet, I would challenge them to read Genesis chapter 3 – 6. In Habakkuk God condemns the Babylonians for their destruction of the beautiful Cedars of Lebanon. Tree hugger?

  7. I remember my fundy preacher grandpa telling me we didn’t need to worry about the bald eagle. If God wants to save it, God would do it. If he wants it extinct, it would happen.

    But they are all about making sure their churches last forever.

    1. The bald eagle is a good example of how humans influence the fate of a species.
      Bald eagles almost disappeared in the mid-20th century because DDT and similar pesticides (which accumulated up the food chain to the eagles) made the eagles’ eggshell too thin to survive. Since DDT was banned, bald eagles have made a big comeback.

      The same thing is true of brown pelicans here on the Gulf coast. I never saw them as a child, but now they fly past every time I’m at the beach.

      Maybe neither eagles nor pelicans have a lot of economic importance for humans, but I strongly believe the world is better with them than without them.

      1. And Millions of people in the third world have died of Malaria as a result of the banning of DDT.

        There are causes and effects to every human action, and every interest group ignores the ones that are convenient for them to ignore. Unfortunately there are fundamentalists on both sides of the environmental issues plus its usually more a “not in my backyard” thing when it comes to this. We are committed to clean air and water, but ignore the fact that in order to obtain that in the developed world we have forced much of the production of goods that cause pollution and environmental hazard offshore. These are complicated issues.

        I find many environmental documentaries to be as maddening as a fundy sermon, just different content. Same appeal to empty emotionally driven arguments, same lack of clear logical progression, same hyperbole and propaganda held up as “established fact” and a belief in the absolute infallibility of “science”, a monolithic absolute that doesn’t exist in reality which is parallel to the fundy belief in an infallible scripture (and by that meaning the infallibility of their interpretation and application of it – not infallibility in the way that was originally posited).

        1. But in the end the DDT will harm the humans too as it continued to enter the food chain, concentrating at the top. Also, even early on, DDT resistance developed. So even if the use was continued, its effectiveness would have dropped quite severely.

        2. DDT is not the cause of malaria in tropical countries. nor is it a remedy.
          For one thing, DDT is still legal in most of those countries. (Of course, being legal doesn’t mean that very poor people can afford it, which is one of the problems with pesticides as a solution to worldwide problems.)
          For another, insect populations develop resistance to it fairly quickly.
          DDT was promoted as a cure-all, magic bullet when it was first produced, but, yes, things turn out to be more complicated than that.

    2. It’s a little scary how many fundies seem to believe in spontaneous generation. Even if you believe that is how God initially created all living things, Genesis seems pretty clear that phase of creation is done and now living things are only reproduced “after their kind.”

      1. I posted under “Soooo Fundy” about this girl I knew in junior high who was trying out public school after having been homeschooled in that way that is both funny and sad. She said that her parents told her that bag limits are (can’t actually remember the buzzword; I think it was “pagan” but it could’ve been “liberal” or both) because if we kill all the deer, God will just make more! 😀 Like, she said, one day, nothing but dirt; the next day, up would pop deer, like mushrooms. She may even have quoted the scene from The Magician’s Nephew in which deer do precisely that.

        You should’ve seen her shocked expression when I told her that the deer in our hunting district all came off a barge from the mainland within living memory. She wouldn’t talk to me after that. I knew something that apparently her parents didn’t know, so I was beyond the pale.

        1. Oh. My. Word. Yes, I forgot about the great fundy series of science textbooks known as the Chronicles of Narnia.

        2. C. S. Lewis would be horrified at someone using his book that way. Aslan created creatures only once at the beginning of the world he made. Then they were expected to care for their land and for each other.

        3. I’m almost positive C.S. Lewis didn’t intend for his fiction books to be read as science texts.

      1. Well, I don’t have a gun in my house because

        * My sons, who were curious and inventive would have found a way to play with it, no matter how locked up it was. Too many tragedies have claimed children’s lives that way long before a home invader would have.

        * Locking up a gun as safely as I would have needed to keep my children safe would have prevented it from being useful in case of an emergency.

        * People who have guns at the ready in home invasions are more likely to get killed by their own guns than they are to kill the invader.

        * I would have to pause before taking someone else’s life. I am not a person who has any desire to kill. Is my property worth someone else’s life? And that pause, that thought for the life of another would be what kills me. The intruder would think, “Me or him” and he would choose me.

        * If I’d had access to a gun at the worst points of my depression, I’d have shot myself. Some protection, eh?

        “Some trust in chariots, and some in horses: but we will remember the name of the Lord our God.” Psalm 20:7.

        Or, “Some trust in guns and some in law enforcement: but we will trust in the name of the Lord our God.”

    3. “If God wants to save it, God would do it. If he wants it extinct, it would happen.”
      Can I play Devil’s advocate? Oops. I mean IFB’s advocate? :cough:
      I have to say this statement is true. I can’t play Devil’s advocate well though so I have to say this statement is true, just not in the way most IFBers view it.
      If God wants to save it, God will do it, but some times He does it through us. So litter on the road and things like that? Not cool.
      If He wants it extinct, it will happen no matter what we do to keep it from going extinct.
      Even when someone has a not yet curable disease that will eventually kill them, don’t we go after all the surgeries and medications that we can use to keep them alive and healthy as long as possible? You’re going to die eventually, not yet curable disease or healthy, and all it takes is one electrical short in the life support machines to send some one to the great beyond. Why do we bother with that? Is Heaven actually such a scary place we don’t want to go there any sooner than we have to?
      Or maybe I’ve just stumbled on the reason certain IFBers use to excuse their gluttony. >.>
      And, yes, I know there are churches out there who believes everything can be prayed out without you even having to pick up the remote to change the channel. Then I’d have to ask them what other messed up translation of the Bible they’re reading.
      God won’t give you the good night’s sleep you prayed for if you don’t close your eyes first.
      Thankfully I don’t remember any sermons against environmentalism at my formerly IFB to the point of nuts, still labeled IFB now but discovering reality church. A Christian school I went to even had a highway we cleaned at least once every year. Mind you that was a slightly more “librul” school compared to my church way back when, but still.

      1. Taking this line of reasoning to its logical conclusion, why bother eating or bathing?
        If God wants you to keep living, God will arrange it somehow, amen?

        See: Cathars

        1. Or, to quote Full Metal Jacket:

          “If God wanted you up there, he would have miracled your ass up there!!!”

      1. Yep, you an always count on her to deliver the goods. It’s almost become a game with me and my wife to bring up the most innocent, innocuous topic possible and bait her to see what her extremist fundy position is on the issue. Trust me, she always has one!!

        1. I can see how that could be a fun game.

          “Aren’t those kittens cute”?
          “Ice cream tastes good.”
          “People who disembowel first-graders really annoy me.”

        2. Aren’t those kittens cute?

          Mom’s answer: Yes, but I prefer real babies. I just think it’s sooo cute to see a stay-at-home mom with lots of cute kids!

          Ice cream tastes good.

          Mom’s retort: Well, it’s just feeding our flesh but if you don’t mind let’s just eat ice cream for lunch. (This actually happened more than once in my childhood. You know, now that I think about it, I really think my mother was crazy.)

          People who disembowel first graders really annoy me.

          Mom’s rejoinder (this one was easy): Well, those kids shouldn’t have been in public school in the first place. Better for them to die young before they are taught evolution and common core and how to question authority!

    1. Sarcasm alert, aimed at Hummer drivers, not at Robot Gypsy:

      You’d better stock up on spare parts, Bubba, assuming you can afford them after buying gasoline for that road hog. The Hummer went out of production in 2010.

      1. I once told a friend who said she was thinking of getting a Hummer that a cheaper way to communicate the same message would be to have “I’M AN IDIOT” tattooed across her forehead in letters an inch high.

        That wasn’t one of my more tactful moments.

  8. My former pastor used to say that the Bible disproves global warming in Genesis 8:22, “While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease.” If summer and winter will never cease, then global warming can’t be true by his reasoning. He also denies relativistic time dilation on the grounds that it would allow a person to live longer than the threescore and ten years allotted in Psalm 90:10. This just shows his inability to parse context in the scripture, as well as his lack of understanding of the science. It really bugged me back when I was a fundy, but ultimately it played a small part in helping me validate my decision to leave in the end.

    1. Wait, what? It would allow a person to live longer than the Biblical three-score-and-ten? I certainly hope so, seeing as how I”m 66 and hope to live as long as my great-grandmother, who made it to 99. If he wants to kick off at 70, that’s his business.

  9. Re: Hovertext.

    My parents subscribe to a variant of this belief as well. They basically throw their money away on their church (30% “tithe” (trithe??)) and on sending their kids to unaccredited Bible colleges and on living beyond their means (their electric bill is almost double my house payment) and on supporting my loser sister and her husband. They pride themselves on “taking no thought for the morrow.” They honestly believe that God will magically provide for them in their old age. I tried to explain to them once that God IS providing for them in their old age by giving my father the ability to earn a generous income now, from which he can save for retirement!! They just laughed. They act like it’s a joke that they have less money in savings than my wife and I do (when our household income is less than half of theirs). I think they expect that since they have seven children that we are going to support them as a reward for being so faithful to God’s true church. Not likely! If anything happened to my father, my mother would be broke in a matter of a few months or less. (My wife and I have a good friend whose wealthy father untimely passed away and his fundy mother was destitute in less than a year and had no choice but to marry another fundy man who ordered her to disown all her children.) My mother told me that’s okay because God commands the church to take care of widows. I asked her if their church actually takes care of widows (they don’t) and she said “that’s a very insulting question to ask. Your father is a deacon.” Okay then.

    So basically la-de-dah-de-dah and God will just rain down pennies from heaven every time they need to replace one of their four vehicles or maintain their 4000 square foot home and pool and seven acres or replace their entire wardrobe four times a year (one of my adult sisters recently reported that she has 85 skirts, all purchased by my parents) or take $30,000 vacations (to really cool places, like West Coast Baptist College). When we used to go to visit, their closets were so crammed with “stuff” that we literally had to live out of our suitcases.

    My father is 55 and, if he is lucky, he might be able to practice his profession (psychiatry) for perhaps 20 more years. After that, I honestly have no idea how my parents plan to take care of themselves or my many adult siblings that are completely dependent on them. But Jesus will probably come back first (LOL PTL! as one of my dopey sisters likes to say) so no worries man! (In that vein, I think there is delicious irony in the fact that before my father “got saved,” one of his favorite songs was “Don’t Worry Be Happy.” LOL PTL! indeed!!)

    1. Deacon’s Son:

      Sorry to hear that; the flippant attitude angers me.

      Yes, Jesus commanded us to take no thought for the morrow; however, read IN CONTEXT, He was telling us not to worry about what may happen tomorrow, since there will be time enough to deal with it tomorrow.

      However, part of TODAY’S jobs is to plan for tomorrow, and this includes sound planning for “what if I get hit by a truck on the way home? – Will my wife be provided for? Will our children be able to be raised as we wish?” This IS a job for today, and shirking it is disobeying the command to provide for one’s family – one is “worse than an infidel” the Bible says.

      In OT times, it appears that 50 was the retirement age (if I remember correctly). Not sure if that applied to other professions or not. But planning for tomorrow is part of the work we are to do today… witness the Bible telling people to go out before the Sabbath and gather twice as much.

      I read about your house with a twinge of envy; my wife and I have tried very hard to save towards being not dependent upon handouts; as a consequence, we don’t have a 4000 sq ft house; we don’t have a pool and several other amenities that many people around us have.

      But our home is paid for, and we believe that we can help our kids with college.

      1. Good for you!! Trust me, MY house is nowhere near as extravagant as my parents’ house. In fact, when we bought it earlier this year, all they said was “that will do for a starter home, I guess.” Um, no, I think we may live the rest of our lives here. Sorry it’s not impressive enough for them but we too care about things like providing for our future and being able to have kids that we can afford to educate well and give them a good launch in life.

        1. Best wishes to you; my parents were relatively decent, moral people, but not Christians; the more I read about some of the wacky parents people on here had, the more grateful to God for the parents I did have.

      2. My mom spent *ten years* AFTER the divorce, working two jobs to pay off the debts that Dad ran up, including years of back taxes. Dad went off doing whatever. He’s living in Honduras now with his new wife, where you can live like a prince on Social Security. Mom lives in a modest apt in Honolulu with her new husband, and as he is a number of years older than her she is carefully planning what she will do when he is gone. She’s responsible like that.

        I’m on disability and I have nothing. I owe Sallie Mae some $100k, and can’t pay it. But I try to be responsible in other ways. I give time and energy (and part of my tiny stipend) to my church. I raised three young people to be responsible citizens. I vote. I recycle. I try to buy things with minimal packaging, and a minimum of processed things.

        God gave us a beautiful gift in this planet. Why would I not want to take the best care of it that I can?

        1. “God gave us a beautiful gift in this planet. Why would I not want to take the best care of it that I can?”
          To that I say AMEN! Minus the “HAY.” “HAY” is for horses.

        1. And what about the favorite line at Fundy funerals–“Suppose you die tonight, like this person in the coffin?”

      3. 50-55 was effectively retirement age for most professions in the West until the 13th century. That’s about the age when most people’s eyes start to be too weak for detail work. When eyeglasses were invented in Italy in the 13th century, they were almost immediately cheap enough that an ordinary artisan (modern equivalent, roughly somebody in the kind of blue-collar job you need to go to vocational school for) could save up for a pair without hardship. Eyeglasses were preached from the pulpit as the greatest boon to humankind since fire. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that the Renaissance kicked off about a century later, after eyeglasses had become common in urban Italy. Hundreds of thousands of people, famous and non-, had 20 or more years added to their careers.

        1. I had a MoG that preached against eye doctors, glasses, and contacts. He said that its all a scam to get you “in the system” and actually weakens your eyes to get to “addicted” to glasses.

          Within 1 year of leaving, I got an eye exam and am loving being able to see!

        1. That might lead to a new diagnosis being added to the DSM.
          Something like “Mean as a Snake and Bat-Guano Crazy” (MAS-BGC).

    2. DS, your dad must really love practicing psychiatry. He’s 2 years younger than I, and I think about & plan for retiring regularly. I hope to “pull the pin” in one year.

      Proud of you for living in a smaller home so that you can put money aside for the future. That’s just good planning. Trust me–you’ll turn around twice, and find yourself 50.

      1. Well, I turned around once and found myself 30 (this June!) so I think I’ll just stop turning for now.

        I don’t know that my father WANTS to work till he drops dead, but he will have to if he wants to sustain my family’s ridiculous lifestyle. Fortunately for him, psychiatry is probably one of the lowest impact jobs ever devised by mankind so it is possible to remain active in that profession well into one’s senior years.

    3. Back before the housing market bubble burst, my fundy aunt and uncle bought a nice house is AZ. It was no money down, and no house payments for 3 years. They never read the contract, and knew that Jesus was going to return before they would have to make payments. Well Jesus decided to wait, sit back and laugh as my aunt and uncle cried and moaned when their outrages payments came due. They ended up packing up their house and left the keys on the counter. Nice Christian witness.

    4. Sigh.. there are some really sad cases at my old fundie church who didn’t save for retirement because they were sure Jesus was going to come back before 2000. They are in a world of hurt right now.

    5. And the place they send their college-aged kids and vacation to tends to suck the retirement savings right out of people…And if leadership there knows there is money to be had, they will roll out the red carpet and make sure your experience there is good.

      It is a money-sucking web.

  10. Mixed feelings about Earth Day… when I was growing up, it wasn’t global warming that was the scare; most of the same groups were warning us about another ice age coming if we didn’t make radical changes in our society.

    While I practice conservation and think it is a way to be a good steward of what God has allowed me to have/use, I don’t believe in the hysterical claims of global warming; I believe that the earth cycles through warming and cooling phases.

    As a Christian, I view with suspicion environmental speakers/groups who call the earth “Gaia” (or Gaea), which is just Greek mythology or spiritism, or talk about “channeling mother earth” — this may not be earth worship, but it is very close to it.

    My wife and I were browsing in a store the other day – they had recycled pens for sale, but wanted more $$$ for the recycled pens. I’ll buy recycled when the recycled products are cheaper than the non-recycled products, but I’m not spending extra $$ just to say I bought recycled.

    1. ” I believe that the earth cycles through warming and cooling phases…”

      GR – Those phases are cycled through on the magnitude of thousands of years. Not the 50 or so years that scientific measurements have noticed the trends of an overall warming.

        1. Noticeable, but minor and local. For example, until global warming took hold, local weather went through 45 years of jokes about how you could tell the time of year by the temperature of the rain, then 45 years of more continental weather with hotter summers and colder winters, then back again–complicated by El Nino, the Polar Express, yadda yadda, but if you plotted the weather on two axes you could see the pattern. Now that global climate change has taken hold, the computer model predicts hotter summers, colder winters, and more storms overall.

    2. The global cooling theory did not have wide scientific acceptance. It was hyped by the media because of it’s sensationalist nature. Even back in the 70s, the number of papers predicting warming significantly outnumbered the ones claiming an upcoming ice age.

      See the link:

      Global Cooling on Skeptical Science

      There is definitely consensus regarding global warming now in the scientific community. There was never such a consensus for the cooling theory.

  11. This topic is near and dear to my heart and my livelihood. I first learned of climate change/global warming when I was in college 33 years (sigh) ago. I have been employed in the environmental field for 31 years. Taking care of the earth is not a political issue. It is not a religious issue. It is something we all need to do. Kind of like doing necessary maintenance on your house or car. You can say “I don’t believe” in oil changes.” But eventually your car engine will cease up.

    As we all know, fundies believe that Jesus is coming back real soon. Like next week. Well if not next week then this year sometime. Not that I want to set a date but he he is coming back real soon amen? 🙂 But he hasn’t come back for over 2,000 years now. Maybe, just maybe it will still be another 70 years. A mere blink of the eye for God. But in our lives, most of us will be dead in 70 years. Our children and grandchildren will still be here. We should take of the earth for that reason and that reason only. It is called stewardship. Not because we can cherry-pick verses from the Bible but because it is the right thing to do.

    And yes, human activity can affect the health of the earth. Someone may say they do not believe in global warming or greenhouse gases or looming water shortages in the US Southwest etc. But the thing is, it doesn’t matter if you believe them or not. They are fact. They will exist/happen with or without your “belief”.

    Yes, I am passionate about this topic. Now I have to go find a tree to hug. 🙂

    1. For me, the Golden Rule covers this too. I don’t want people throwing trash in my yard so why would I trash up random areas in nature? I want my own property and my church property to look nice, so I want to keep other areas looking nice too, as much as in me lies. I enjoy canoeing on clean rivers and lakes and I want other people to be able to enjoy that too. I like living in a world that has lions and elephants and polar bears and I want my descendants to live in a world that has them too.

      1. I grew up in a farming community; even as kids, we thought people who littered were rude & thoughtless — we used to bike around the farms and see litter just tossed out of cars. Never understood the mentality of people doing that.

    2. Scorpio: Taking care of the earth should not be political or religious, but it has been made so. People like Al Gore have huge carbon footprints and rake in money from their “green” initiatives; looks like it is not about the environment, but about him making money.

      I’m not as involved as you are; from what I’ve read, the whole global warming thing is not very certain.

      Conserve: yes, certainly… let’s take care of what God has created for our use.

      But I don’t believe that man will be able to do anything to the planet until/unless God allows it. God has a plan for our planet as well, as He will not allow man to interfere with it.

      1. GR – It doesn’t matter what Al Gore does or how big his carbon footprint is or how much money he made off of his book/movie. It is only political because he happens to have been the Democratic VP. That has no bearing on the changes to the environment. You can call him a hypocrite but it doesn’t change the message he delivered. He did not make it political.

  12. You can’t “control” the crowd and force your standards on people if you spend time preaching about this waste of a planet.

    Your average IFB preachers are lazy and have no desire to to study or develop people past standards and manipulative soul winning.

    They wouldn’t dare try and take care of
    This planet because they would have to throw away their McDonald’s trash in the correct waste baskets.

    Recycling is a waste of time and you could be in church learning you need to read, pray and attend church more.

    1. Perhaps you have a wider aquaintance of IFB preachers than I do; I would not say that the average one is lazy and only interested in standards and manipulative soul-winning. I’ve known some like this, but I know sincere men who do study, and do their best for God as they understand Him through His word. I do not despise such men. It is the high-and-mighty leaders who live like royalty, and treat their churches as their private dictatorships whom I despise, and there are certainly sum of these. If there are 10,000 IFB churches, I’d be hard-pressed to name 50 preachers… maybe only 10 that I’ve personally met.

      1. I’m guessing the number of churches that call themselves IFB would be more like 500 to 1000.
        Anybody have a better figure, like based on actual evidence instead of my wild guess or some MoG’s dubious boasts?

      2. I know there are arrogant, lazy, manipulative pastors out there. Thankfully, the IFB pastors I’ve met have been pastors of small churches and were hard-working and earnest. A couple of guys were obnoxious, but even they were diligent and driven.

        I used to always wish I’d been part of larger churches because there were more opportunities, more excitement, and more connections, but reading the horror stories on SFL has made me thankful for my little corner of the world, sheltered and limited as it was.

        1. (I still disagree with them on many things especially equating man-made standards with the Bible and their misunderstanding of grace. )

      3. I would say most IFB pastors are not out to develop their people into well rounded (could argue
        what that means but I think you understand) Christians . I’m not even sure they know how. The
        IFB church’s aren’t even setup to have strong leadership around the pastor because that makes them uncomfortable and they would have to be accountable for their actions. So yes, they are lazy in that regards. Some do work hard but not in the right areas IMHO

  13. “They wouldn’t dare try and take care of
    This planet because they would have to throw away their McDonald’s trash in the correct waste baskets.”
    Do I spy someone who’s worked food service before? You can come cry on my shoulder. I don’t miss that at all and now end up cleaning up other people’s messes before I leave the McDonalds. Not out of former food service reflex but because I remember all too well the customers who thought the employees were their maids.
    And it looks like I might be back in food service soon. Because I need two jobs and apparently I am that desperate. Pray for my sanity.

  14. In honor of earth day, I’m driving with windows down, AC cranked up full blast, doing my part to combat global warming…might even cut off a Prius or two…

    1. Um, wow.

      I did tell a co-worker that I’d be celebrating earth day by littering with recyclable, biodegradable trash, instead of the usual cheap plastic trash I throw around, but he knew I was just kidding.

      I hope.

  15. Fundamentalists don’t have much use for science. Ever since Hume laid waste to the idea of miracles being accepted because some people said something happened 2000 years ago, Christians have had to find a way of coexisting with science and a more skeptical public mindset. So global warming, vaccines, protecting the planet and evolution are rejected because if science proves that part of the Bible is false . Resulting choice; the Bible is all false or all science is all false.

  16. The thing is, most people are not scientists. So how do they decide whether something scientists are saying is true or false? In most areas of science, such as medicine, people generally accept the majority scientific opinion. We believe it when we are told that exercise is good for us, that we should get certain tests at certain ages, and that smoking or drinking during pregnancy can harm a baby. When it comes to the environment, however, the majority scientific opinion is met with skepticism. So, if you are not a scientist yourself, and you don’t accept the majority opinion, on what do you base your belief about the environment? It seems that many people look solely at the ideologies ASSOCIATED with a scientific claim. Therefore, if climate change is associated with liberal ideologies, it must be wrong, because liberals can’t be right about anything.

  17. I confess to not understanding this mentality. Are they unaware that everyone is downstream from someone? Are they too young to remember when the Cuayahoga caught fire (more or less). Do they not see what is happening in China now, where the air pollution is double what we experienced in the 70s? Would they mind drinking from the Little Tennessee prior to Champion Paper’s cleanup? Did they never go to Copper Hill, TN? Why would you want to trash where you live, much less trash the place where your children live.

    Short memories, closed minds.

  18. Good comments from Stoney and also Scorpio earlier. I teach Environmental Science as part of my job at the local community college & feel that stewardship of natural resources is a Christian/religious as well as civic responsibility. Anyone that believes mankind can’t royally mess things up should read about or visit Chernobyl – and most recently the Daiichi Fukushima incident. My two cents…

    1. This gorgeous, amazing planet is so much more than a ball of dirt. God looked at it and called it “good.” Though marred by sin, it groans for redemption. How sad that he so callously dismisses this treasure. (I won’t, however, call it my mother.)

    2. How about the irony of Gipp calling the earth just a ball of dirt that doesn’t know anything (that he also proudly proclaims to walk on) yet he believes that he came from the very dirt he is mocking.

      1. The earth is much more than a ball of dirt, but it’s not so surprising that Sam Gipp doesn’t notice that.

        The King James Bible is just a stack of paper with ink stains on it, Sam.
        By the Sam Gipp method of valuation.

      2. … But given the Fundy attitudes toward women, it wouldn’t surprise me to see Sam Gipp walk on my mother, in the unlikely event he ever had the opportunity.

  19. The mystery is that we still expect Fundyism to be about serving God, albeit in legalistic and control-freakish ways.

    It isn’t. It is about power, wealth, and manipulation. And nothing, nothing must ever impede the ability of the MOGs to do what they want to whom (or what) they please without having to answer to anybody.

    Dumping toxins in the water? No regulations! Being against regulations and saving the local “Christian” businessman bushels of money is sure to bring some of his dollars their way! No matter that it poisons water for those who drink it. No matter that children are born with birth defects. No matter that the rivers once burned. Even Republicans got so fed up with the pollution that they created the EPA (under Richard Nixon) and passed landmark pieces of legislation like the Clean Water Act (which Nixon vetoed, but which sailed through a Congressional override).

    No. Today it is all about raping the earth so Jesus can destroy it completely or fix it later. Just so long as they get the profit now. Preachers support business and industry that love the profits and eschew responsibility for what they do.

    And business and industry support the Conservative causes that fundamentalists love.

    The problem is that even when they know they are being controlled, fundamentalists prefer it that way. As a fundy, I felt “safe” in my God-approved cocoon of ignorance, denial, and scorn of things “liberal.” Save the earth? How “New Age!” Jesus is coming SOON! So who cares about the planet? The Bible says that during the tribulation, the world will be a wreck anyway, so why worry about what we are doing now?

    Is it possible? Could the extreme “prophesy” emphasis within fundamentalism have been anti-environmental conditioning? I knew of Christian businessmen who took great interest in it and promoted it in the church.

    Or maybe it is an accidental confluence of factors, convenient in the extreme. You think?

    God told Adam to care for the Creation. Obviously God thought that what man did could and would affect this world. “Thou madest him a little lower than the angels. Thou hast put all things under his feet.”

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