Over the years I have had many discussions with family and friends about the consequences of runaway ‘environmentalism’ and the furor over global warming in particular. I have heard many people say, well even if the science isn’t perfect we should still act now. Isn’t it better to act, even if we are not 100% sure? What is the harm?
I am a conservationist, but I am continually worried about an ‘environmentalism’ that touts weak science in defense of sometimes draconian public policy with little or no regard for the human impact.
There has been no greater example of the effects of such policy on human life than the furor that followed Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring. The book claimed that there was ‘science’ that proved the detrimental effects of pesticides on the environment, particularly on birds. She proposed a ban on DDT claiming that DDT had been found to cause thinner egg shells and result in reproductive problems and death. This book led to the ban on DDT. Good right? As it turns out, the ‘science’ was flawed. Even if the science wasn’t perfect, what was the harm?
The harm is that as a direct result of policy based on bad science, tens of millions of people including upwards of 20 million children have died of malaria. Tens of millions of poor people, predominantly African, have died as a result of this harmless public policy. Even more shocking is that even though this fact has been evident for some time, most of the mainstream ‘environmentalists’ continue to support the ban. Many people suspect, myself included, that they turn a blind eye to the monstrous effects of the ban because malaria acts a post-birth form of population control in areas where birth-control and abortion have yet to satisfactorily reduce birth rates.
The effects of the DDT ban are now even backed by long time environmentalist and DDT ban supporting magazine, National Geographic. From Lifesite:
National Geographic (NG), a leading environmentalist, de-population supporting magazine, has published a major cover story by Michael Finkel on the extraordinarily deadly and complex malaria parasite. The July 2007 NG edition article discusses possible solutions to the disease but also uncharacteristically acknowledges a leading expert’s contention that the international ban on DDT was a terrible mistake which may have cost many millions of lives, especially in poor African nations. Environmental ideologues have been quick to slam Finkel’s article as being flawed and damaging to the their past success in convincing the world to ban the DDT pesticide.
Environmental ideologues are quick to slam anything that questions their ideology. The science and the consequence be damned. It is a religion, remember.
So the next time you are in a discussion with a family member, a friend, or a colleague and someone asks, “shouldn’t we just ban this or that? What is the harm?” Remember DDT and the 20 million dead children.