Posted by: smstrouse | June 4, 2011

Mother Nature’s Got Gas!

Tornados have been ripping up the south and midwest lately.  Even the East coast got hit, which is not unheard of, but it is unusual. The tornado news came on the heels of reports of devastating flooding, especially of the Mississippi River. It’s almost as if we’re getting the ‘Disaster of the Day’.  If I were an end times kind of believer I might call these events ‘apocalyptic’.  It’s no wonder that bunch of people who followed Harold Camping bought into his prediction of the end of the world. Watching the pictures on the nightly news, I almost believe it myself.

Except – I’m more of a believer in the apocalyptic predictions about global warming and climate change.  Now plenty of other commentators have written about this. And I don’t claim to be a scientist. But I know enough to understand that greenhouse gases have an effect on weather, and the burning of fossil fuels has been the leading cause of the increase of greenhouse gas.

We’ve been talking for decades about our need to get into a recovery program to deal with our addiction to oil.  But we can certainly see how well that’s been working for us (not!) when the prices go up at the gas pump. We scream for more drilling and fewer environmental restrictions. Popularity points for the president can rise and fall with the price of a tank of gas.

When are we going to see the connection? And do something to manage our addiction? OK, I drive a hybrid; maybe I’m feeling a little smug. Except I know that that is such a little bitty drop in the oil barrel of this mess we’ve created.  But as the Twelve Steps remind us: we have to admit that our lifestyle has become unmanageable and that we as a human race must make a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.

It seems to me that the extreme weather of the past few weeks is an environmentally apocalyptic warning about the relationship between greenhouse gas and the stuff we put into our automobiles. If we get heartburn every time we fill up, imagine the distress of the atmosphere. To put it crassly, a tornado is just Mother Nature’s way of saying, “I’ve got gas!”

So I suggest that we refuse to get caught up in the ‘end times’ rants of those who will want to ascribe these weather events to an angry God or to an avenging Jesus who’s decided it’s time to come back and clean up the mess.

It is time to clean up the mess – for us to clean up the mess. And give Mother Nature some relief.

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