Letter to the Editor: Stop spreading doubt

To the editor:

A few years ago we heard our political leaders say global warming wasn’t happening. Now they say it’s happening but that they’re not certain how much "man’s activities have to do with it.”

Casting doubt on science isn’t new, in fact it’s what the tobacco industry did years ago to keep us from knowing the dangers of cigarette smoking. Today it’s our politicians and the fossil fuel industry that are casting doubt.

It’s well documented that Exxon’s scientists knew in the 1970’s that the Earth was warming and that man was causing it. More recently, in 1998, an internal memo from the Exxon-funded American Petroleum Institute said, “Victory will be achieved when average citizens ‘understand’ (recognize) uncertainties in climate science.”In other words, if they can keep the public from knowing the truth then they can continue business as usual.

If they were ignorant then it might be understandable, but when the president, our elected leaders, and some industries purposely try to spread doubt it becomes deceitful and immoral.

Spreading doubt about science is a very bad thing to do. It’s better to ask why one would want you to doubt it.

Bruce Schwartz

The Dalles

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