"I don't care if people believe in it or not," said Racine Mayor Gary Becker. "To me, why even argue the point? All the things to reduce global warming are things we should be doing anyway."
Like what sort of things? Well, we could use less energy, reduce mercury contamination from coal-fired power plants and reduce the nations involvements overseas, according to Becker. "Do the right things, and leave the debate about global warming alone."
Wow! Now I think we humans have a responsibility as stewards of the earth, but must we follow the dictates of King Becker without any debate?
Even if we assume that the earth is warming (much evidence suggests so) and that humans and their pollution are substantial contributors to the problem ( less evidence), does it follow that Beckers proposed solutions should be followed without debate?
Debate is sorely needed. Is global warming all bad, mostly bad, or would the good outweigh the bad? The folks in northern Canada, if there are any, might just welcome some warmer weather.
But lets assume that global warming is all or mostly bad and that it is caused by humans. Do we then follow Becker without debate?
No, because we would need to consider the cost of Beckers suggestions versus the potential benefits. For example, reducing energy use in some parts of the world could contribute to poverty. Would reducing our involvements overseas slow global warming? Would this be worth it if the result was the unchecked spread of religious extremism and terror?
I wish things were as easily solved as Becker seems to think they are.