Juan Cole: Global Warming Is a Domestic Crisis

tags: climate change, global warming, Juan Cole, Truthdig, crises



Juan R.I. Cole is the Richard P. Mitchell Collegiate Professor of History at the University of Michigan.

As President Obama made clear in his inaugural address Monday, failing to confront the threat of climate change in his second term would be a betrayal of future generations. “Some may still deny the overwhelming judgment of science,” Obama said, “but none can avoid the devastating impact of raging fires, and crippling drought and more powerful storms.” Actually, there are some who can avoid fires, drought and storms, but most of them voted for Mitt Romney.

At a time of continued unemployment and Republican assaults on workers’ rights, the climate crisis may not seem like a pressing bread and butter concern. However it is vital for the president and his allies in Congress to remember that those Americans most defenseless against extreme weather and natural disasters form the backbone of the Democratic Party.

That is the only conclusion one can draw from the draft of a new federal study on global warming’s growing impact on the United States. Those who stand for workers and the middle class, and for the rights of minorities, women and the underprivileged in our increasingly unequal society, are facing yet another epochal struggle. The carbon dioxide being spewed into the atmosphere by the coal, oil and gas corporations threatens the well-being of the 99 percent on a whole range of new fronts....



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