Following widespread protest over George Will's climate-change-denial column, letters-to-the-editor have been popping up in newspapers all over the country. Will's column misused data and distorted statements made by climate experts in order to suggest that human-caused global warming is not occurring, so it isn't surprising to see so many people up in arms over this. Check out this sampling of letters:
Lawrence Journal-World: Will off base (Letter, 2/19/09)
[Will] puts together apparently irreconcilable statements from the mid-1970s and today, apparently in an effort to show that climate scientists don't know climate change from a hole in their hats. I suppose it didn't suit his political purposes to consult a few climate scientists. He says that climate change is No. 20 of 20 concerns according to a public poll. He is apparently Will-ing to have it remain there.
The Advocate: Will erred about global warming (Letter, 2/21/09)
Like many pundits, Will's belief in his own omniscience leads him to assume instant expertise on any topic. It also results in his repeatedly misleading the public on important issues such as global warming.
The Advocate should employ a fact checker for the columns it runs, or share responsibility for their misrepresentations.
Austin American-Statesman: Warming ignorance (Letter, 2/22/09)
George Will showed ignorance and pulled out the tired straw man that those of us who care about stopping climate change are gloom-and-doomers when the opposite is true.
Atlanta Journal-Constitution: Look out your window, George (Letter, 2/22/09)
I am concerned for the future of my grandchildren and great-grandchildren. If there is even a small chance that what scientists and climatologists have been telling us for years is true, we owe it to our offspring to take this threat seriously and change our lifestyles. Ignoring this threat is like storing nuclear weapons in your garage. You may not expect them to be detonated, but how can you be sure?
Pensacola News-Journal: Beyond the limit (Letter, 2/22/09)
George Will's column on Feb. 15 ("Global warming issue may be melting") is breathtaking in its obstinate rejection of the science of climate change.
What is melting is the arctic permafrost that could release a hundred million tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere this century. This and other "feedback loops," and how they are accelerating the pace of warming, was the subject of an article the same day as Will's column in his home newspaper, The Washington Post.
Will dismisses global warming as a "hypothetical" crisis overshadowed by the economic crisis. He is unable to accept increasing evidence of climate change, even as it piles up like logs in a blazing fireplace.
Times of Trenton: Climate change leaves columnist cold (Letter, 2/22/09)
I am so glad to hear from the eminent climatologist George Will (column, "The fine art of predicting catastrophes," Feb. 15) that the predictions of global climate change will all turn out to be wrong. His justification? The fact that the cooling trend of the mid-20th century didn't lead to an ice age, as some had predicted.
If one climate prediction has been wrong, then they all will be, of course.
That most of the other eminent climatologists understand that cooling is the result of another man-made influence, the increasing particulate pollution from industrialization, and that its end was the result of our efforts to decrease that pollution, is inconsequential. Obviously, all predictions of catastrophe are wrong; otherwise, how could we be here today?
Chico Enterprise-Record: Of course the earth is changing (Letter, 2/23/09)
There's a lot of imaginative computer modeling and fuzzy logic going on by the global warming supporters. In the same paper George Will ("Imagined calamity suddenly shrinks") discussed the impending "return to another ice age," which was a popular scientific "opinion" in the mid-1970s. Read that one too. A grain of salt is always indicated where "scientific opinion" is involved. Hopefully, the satellite just launched by Japan, and the one to be launched by us soon, will provide the facts to clarify that situation once and for all.
I think a lot of the support for global warming comes from the "sustainability" folks who equate carbon dioxide increase with natural resource depletion, which could be a much more supportable position.
Does your local paper carry George Will? Have you contacted the Washington Post and asked that they correct Will's column?