The Climate in Emergency

A weekly blog on science, news, and ideas related to climate change

Think of the Children

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Ok, yeah, children separated from their parents with no clear plan to reunite them–I think I can declare that “bad” without violating this blog’s commitment to political neutrality on issues other than climate. Certain things are moral, not political.

And I’m pleased, really heartened, to see the nationwide (if not quite universal) outcry in favor of helping these kids and righting the wrong. I’m joining the effort–I plan to join a protest this coming weekend.

But where is the outcry about climate change?

If you care about kids, especially kids from poor, disenfranchised families, kids who get the short end of a lot of sticks, then you care about climate change. These are the kids likely to be flooded by more extreme weather, laid low by increasing risk of heat stroke, or variously disrupted by the violence and economic hardship likely to become more frequent.

Will all who are now children live painful, difficult lives because of climate change? No, far from it, but some will. Perhaps only a small minority–but only a small minority of children sit today in detention camps of various kinds. It’s still too many.

Look, I’m preaching to the choir right now, and doing so deliberately. I’m not saying “care about climate–think of the children!” because if you’re reading these words, you probably already do care. I’m saying what are we, the people who do care, doing wrong that there is not an uprising in the streets over the most important issue of our age?

Why doesn’t climate change seem real, even to the people who know perfectly well that it is?

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Author: Caroline Ailanthus

I am a creative science writer. That is, most of my writing is creative rather than technical, but my topic is usually science. I enjoy explaining things and exploring ideas. I have one published novel and another on the way. I have a master's degree in Conservation Biology and I work full-time as a writer.

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