‘Cohort replacement’: Climate deniers won’t change, but they will die
What to do about climate change deniers? David Roberts at Grist says we should simply wait for them to die off.
‘Cohort replacement’: Climate deniers won’t change, but they will die | Grist.
“Let’s remember what is too rarely discussed in polite company: Climate denial is largely concentrated among conservative white men. And not just conservative white men, but old conservative white men, otherwise known as the GOP base. The average age of a Fox News viewer is 65. A 2008 survey found that Rush Limbaugh’s audience is 72 percent male, 80 percent conservative, and an average age of 67.
“This is a cohort that has convinced itself that bike paths are a U.N. plot. And I don’t mean “bike paths are a U.N. plot” in some sort of satirical, poetic-license sort of way. They really believe bike paths are a U.N. plot. They’ve convinced themselves that Obama is a Kenyan socialist with no birth certificate who apologizes for America and wants to fundamentally transform it into Europe, where they loll about all day on welfare, having homosexual sex while the Muslims take over. They believe in death panels and reeducation camps and giant North American mega-highways and creeping Sharia.
“Relative to that backdrop, believing that climate change is a scam cooked up by scientists to get grant money and/or by liberals to create global government — a scam that has fooled every major scientific institution and most of the world’s politicians — hell, that’s easy.
“What’s the upshot of all this? It seems to me the implication is clear: It would be wise to divert a little time and attention away from the quixotic effort to change denier minds and toward the task of building the political coalition necessary to contain the damage this cohort does on its way out.”