Belief Beat

Belief Beat

Gov. Rick Perry: Faith, Not Science, Explains Texas Drought?

I’m mystified that GOP presidential contenders still get away with dismissing climate change as a a mere “theory” (like gravity?), but even more so when the doubting Thomas comes in the form of Gov. Rick Perry, of the drought-stricken state of Texas — not to mention the hurricane-ravaged Gulf Coast.

Yet at last night’s Republican debate, he reaffirmed his suspicion of global warming.

Americans want their presidents to be religious. And many people, not just Michele Bachmann, believe natural disasters are a sign from God. But don’t we also need our politicians to believe what our leading scientific minds tell us about the world, too? Couldn’t that also be a message from God? Or do we want a president to adopt more public prayers, instead of adapting public policy, when confronted with an environmental crisis?


What do you think? Share your thoughts in the Comments section below.

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posted September 9, 2011 at 7:00 pm

I understand chiefs and religious leaders used to be judged on things like needed rains and such. If we still did that Perry’s inability to do anything about the drought would have disqualified him long ago. Evangelicals seem to judge other people quickly and their own very slowly.

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posted September 9, 2011 at 7:27 pm

Phillip Smith

posted September 11, 2011 at 7:57 am

Rick Perry, Michele Bachman, and their ilk in the Republican Party, think”the science is not settled on climate change”. I beg to differ. I would argue the opposite is true. Have these people not seen the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina, the recent drought, etc. Have these people been, as my family and I have, to countries as remote as Norway, for example, and seen the fast disappearing ice caps? Of course, scientists say that even a mere 1 degree increase in surface temperatures, will have a devastating effect on the Earth. As, like Rick Perry, being a deeply committed Christian, I believe that being authentically Christian,(or even human, for that matter), is caring for the Earth. In fact, you may be surprised to learn that even the Bible itself is littered(no pun intended) with numerous references to caring for creation. In Jeremiah 9:10 for example, the writer laments:”I will mourn for the mountains, and weep for the pastures, because they have dried up, and no-one travels through them. The sound of cattle is no longer heard:birds and wild animals have fled and gone”. Also in the creation story, the original meaning was not that “In the beginning “God CREATED the heaven and the earth”(past tense), but rather that God BEGAN to create. This is the growing problem we are facing, particuarly as Christians, when a sad majority of Christian fundamentalists, take passages of scripture completely out of the context in which they were originally written. The Hebrew word for breath is “nepesh”. Nepesh, however, it NOT dependent on some God up in the sky, but rather, one that calls us all to “live fully, love wastefully, give extravegantly, live abundantly, and to be the best that we can be”. I hope that, without wanting to be pompous or self righteous, that this will provide us all with a renewal of our responsibilty to care for creation.

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