Sunday, March 17, 2013

Climate And Abortion: Perfect Together

You may not think climate change and abortion have much in common.  But you would be wrong- at least if Marco Rubio is to be believed.   Speaking at the Conservative Political Action Conference (transcript here), the GOP's leading presidential candidate declared

Just because I believe that states should have the right to define marriage in the traditional way does not make me — – This. Just because we believe that life all life on human. It’s worthy of protection at every stage of its development does not make.

– The people who are actually close minded American politics are the people that loved to preach about the certainty about science when regards to our climate but ignore the absolute fact that science has proven that life begins at conception.

Where to begin?  Although Rubio is convinced (or claims to be) that life begins at conception, we'll begin at what his complaint about "the people that loved to preach about the certainty about science when regards to our climate."

And there is good news about the climate:  across the globe, last month was not the warmest February since record-keeping began in 1880. It merely

tied with 2003 as the 9th warmest February of the past 133 years, according to scientists with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA). They calculated last month's globally-averaged temperature at 54.93 degrees Fahrenheit (12.67 degrees Celsius), or 1.03 degrees F (0.57 degrees C), above the 20th century average of 53.9 degrees F (12.1 degrees C).

This means February 2013 was the 336th consecutive month with a global temperature above the 20th century average. The last below-average February, in terms of temperature, was in 1985....

Of the top nine, eight have come since the year 2000, with 2005 and 2010 sharing the dubious title of hottest year on record.

Marco Rubio for some reason believes climate change is closely linked to abortion, which is an unacceptable choice because "science has proven that life begins at conception."

Science obviously has proven no such thing, although Senator Rubio is going to have to do better than that to keep up with his primary rival for 2016, Paul Ryan, in the lying department. But we'll play on the turf, Scripture, the right has claimed for itself.  For it is written in Genesis 2:6-8 in the English Standard Version

and a mist[a] was going up from the land and was watering the whole face of the ground—7 then the Lord God formed the man of dust from the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living creature. 8 And the Lord God planted a garden in Eden, in the east, and there he put the man whom he had formed.

So a man, according to the Old Testament, becomes "a living creature" once God has "breathed into his nostrils the breath of life."  Helpfully, the Mayo Clinic, in describing pregnancy week-by-week, explains

Thirty-two weeks into your pregnancy, or 30 weeks after conception, your baby's toenails are visible.

Although your baby's lungs aren't fully formed, he or she practices breathing. Your baby's body begins absorbing vital minerals, such as iron and calcium from the intestinal tract. The layer of soft, downy hair that has covered your baby's skin for the past few months — known as lanugo — starts to fall off this week.

For those keeping score at home, that would be thirty-two weeks, or approximately 7 and one-half months, into pregnancy when the fetus begins to breath.  At that time, "the breath of life" has been "breathed into the nostrils" and the being has become "a living creature."

The ultra-right feels (or believes, but the right typically "feels" a lot more than it "thinks") put upon, and is defensive.   Witness the CPAC panel entitled “Trump the Race Card: Are You Sick and Tired of Being Called a Racist and You Know You’re Not One?"  And immediately before declaring his fealty to the pro-life cause, Rubio remarked "Just because I believe that states should have the right to define marriage in a traditional way does not make me a bigot."

They believe they're labeled as bigoted and racist- and anti-science.  Conservatives who are media savvy do not directly attack science.  They contend science is on their side, as when Rubio falsely maintains "science has proven that life begins at conception."  It makes them less vulnerable to attack from Democrats, or from a mainstream media prone to the "he said, she said" meme.

In one sentence, Rubio effectively combines two causes dear to the American right:   the faith that human life begins at conception, important to the popular base of the Repub Party, and denial of climate change, which joins the popular base with the money base of the GOP. It is a winning message, and that the first is debatable, the second ridiculous, and neither applies to the other only adds to its appeal.

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