In a recent letter to The Times, a Lula city councilman made the following statement: “We should have knowledge and a spiritual obligation to do the right thing.”
I assume he means all of us, not just councilmen and other public officials. But how do we obtain this knowledge, and what is the “right thing?”
The same section of the paper carried a headline reading: “Poll: Few Catholics know Pope’s view about climate change.” Neither do the majority of Americans. Pope Francis has placed humanity’s response to climate change at the top of his list of moral imperatives. In short — curbing climate change is a moral obligation.
However, steps to curb climate change often conflict with a capitalistic system that places prophet above morality. Said Upton Sinclair: “It is hard to make people understand something when their job depends on their not understanding it.”
Some people are ignorant of the facts, but fortunes have been made in hiding certain inconvenient facts. Example: The tobacco industry knew full well that cigarettes caused cancer but spent millions denying it. Today, very rich individuals are being spending billions trying to convince the public that CO2 is not contributing to global warming.
The public may be ignorant, but the top echelons in the power companies are not. Those who deliberately deny what they know are immoral.
Joan O. King