I’m continually staggered how unflinchingly ignorant some people can be in the face of compelling scientific evidence that human activity can impact on the natural world. The basic physical science behind greenhouse gas absorption has long be established, is fairly easy to understand and leads an erringly to a single conclusion; more greenhouse gas, more greenhouse behaviour. Gigatonnes of CO2 must lead to warming.
Still, some people just don’t buy it.
And yet, such people are quick to call upon notions that simply have no correlation with reality. For instance, you have religious leaders insisting that “God” created Hurricane Sandy in response to homosexuality, such as John McTernan. It is incredible that we were able to model Hurricane Sandy’s expected path – all thanks to a little thing called science (oh, and the countless research hours therein) – yet divinity is supposed to trump well defined, repeatable reasoning!
I’ve yet to hear a valid argument as to why homosexuality is abhorrent and unnatural. With a sound head for biology and free from the blinkers of dogmatic and unquestionable ideologies, I cannot equate such a conclusion and, more importantly, why on Earth the sexual preferences of some people within their private lives should be so passionately the contemplation of others… The real depravity I find is just that; religious zealots obsessing so much over the sexuality of others.
If a deity can create a storm of the magnitude or Sandy and biblical floods, then surely, in its endless power, wrath and fury, it could hit the private homes of such people it disagrees with, with lightening, meteorites and plague. Or, more empathetically, such a deity surely could make people not only in its image, but with its desired sexual interests.
Such inconsistencies prevail in stock contrast to scientific endeavours… Inconsistency, ignorance and pure fabrication are all eradicated by the peer review process. Of course, the main opponents to scientific reasoning simply do not understand this however.
Thus, I propose a scientific experiment, if anyone feels inclined to undertake it.
Hypothesis: Natural disasters are more frequent and cause greater detrimental impact to local societies (both in financial value and related death toll) where homosexuality is either more widespread or tolerated.
I suspect it would be more difficult to identify where it is more widespread (due to obvious restrictive forces working against acknowledgement) and, I suspect, because the proportion of the population that is gay is probably independent of other factors (ie. it’s probably fairly consistent globally).
However, there is certainly meteorological data available from most of the global met agencies as well as census data relating to natural disaster death tolls and financial impact. One can even look at how lenient local laws are towards homosexuality and the frequency and estimated turnout rate of gay pride events as indicators to “merit the wrath of a deity”.
With this data and a little statistical know-how, one could surely churn out a paper to test this hypothesis and could submit it to a serious scientific journal for peer review. If successful and statistically significant, the authors may have a valid argument towards to existence of a deity concerned about our sexuality.
As I think it’s a wasted effort, I will not even point out starting points for such data. I doubt such bigots would even take up such an offer for it’s far easier to make something up about weather than to undertake a valid and critical analysis.
That’s also why we no longer believe in Zeus, Ra and others like them; we understand enough about lightening and sun to have killed such myths. The same can be said about any homophobic deity and the creation of storms.