Good news: the Federal Way School Board just lifted its moratorium on “An Inconvenient Truth.”
Unfortunately, coverage in the Seattle Times, the largest paper in the region, was disappointing. It mostly treats the decision as a simple controversy without ever explaining that there is, in fact, only one right answer about the reality of human-induced climate change. To paraphrase my earlier rantings: this is not a matter of personal opinion for lay people; it’s a matter of scientific consensus. And when an article fails to acknowledge that overwhelming consensus, it misleads readers.
For an example of what I mean, here’s the penultimate paragraph:
Board members have said they hope this controversy will start a healthy debate about global warming.
What could this mean?
I’m feeling charitable today, so I’ll assume that the board is hoping that students will pursue post-graduate education in atmospheric science and go on to debate global warming in peer reviewed scientific journals. Or maybe the board members are hoping that the controversy will start a debate over how to adapt to global warming and how to reduce climate changing emissions.
Because if the board means pretty much anything else, it’s clear that they still don’t get it. And it would be nice for media coverage to point that out.
Board members have said they hope this controversy will start a healthy debate about global warming.What could this mean? It is simple. Their words give them away. It means either: they are denialists or they are innocently or purposely confused about global warming science, global warming mitigation, and global warming adaptation. That is: the societal _response_ to the change.See, there is no debate about AGW science. Well, except among denialists and their enablers who spread the word, but ‘debate’ isn’t accurate (hence my ‘denialist’). But there is nothing but “debate” and hand-wringing about mitigation vs adaptation, and it is in some parties’ interest to confuse and conflate the science vs the mitigation [hence the SwiftBoating of James Hansen and Al Gore (and 1. , 2. , 3. )].Because if the board means pretty much anything else, it’s clear that they still don’t get it. And it would be nice for media coverage to point that out. This assumes the media get it, and/or want to report that they get it. And it would be nice for media coverage to point out many things, Eric, including other types of debates: short-term effects of disastrous foreign policy and allowing democratic debate about same f’r instance.