Posted on February 21, 2019
by Steve Janowick

I’m all for being spiritual.  Having a personal relationship with my God is important to me.  Saying a few prayers now and again. Trying to live a relatively clean life that ensures my eternity will be spent with the harp playing dudes and not ones who poke and prod with pitchforks.

And, conversely, I’m also about doing my part to help the environment.  Taking shorter showers. Recycling whenever possible. Not mowing my grass during a blistering heatwave.  Just doing the right thing when I can.

I guess you could say I’m a middle of the road guy in all aspects of my life.  Why? Because I always try to utilize sound reason and prudent discretion. Most of my actions and decisions are predicated on thoughts and introspection rather than emotions and feelings.  I’m a realist. I’m rational. I try to keep guilt and fear in check. To stay out of the margins.

This begs a question.  What’s the difference between a fanatical, religious zealot and a radical, environmental propagator?

Answer: Nothing!  Both are preachers in their respective cults.

We’re all familiar with the first one.  The fire and brimstone, frogs falling from the sky, nut job.  He’s been around for millenniums damning us to hell for our wicked ways.  Shouting from his rock as he condemns us for our sordid lives. Pounding his fists as he scolds us for our fickle beliefs.  Yea, this guy has been around forever. We all know him.

But now there’s a new guy on the scene.

A new preacher in town who’s just as bent on jamming his religion down our gullets.  He too is righteous and virtuous. His cause is validated by nobility. He also employs the same, tried and true strategies of guilt-baiting and fear-mongering.  His mission is to spread the gospel to as many sheep as possible-vilifying then casting out those non-believers who dare impugn him. And he warns of our final, apocalyptic demise should we not immediately correct ourselves and follow his path.  He is the 21st century sectarian.

He is the environmental extremist.

And just like the churches filled to the capacity on Sundays with weeping and clapping holy rollers, this guy is also growing his congregation daily.  Praying on the weak-minded who are looking for a cause to get behind. Looking for a purpose. Looking to feel good and benevolent about themselves. Looking to do their part in saving us all from a certain doomsday.

It’s not enough to acknowledge the possibility of some temperature variances, young man!  You must atone for your sins of prosperity and privilege. You must worship our deities like Al Gore and Barrack Obama.  You must bow at the altar of our brand of science and progress. Skepticism and denial are certain pathways to damnation.  You must cast out, for good, the evil Satan that is carbon. Let your guilt guide you, my son. Allow your fear to propel you.  And together, we will realize our green, one-world utopia…

Yada, yada, yada…Whatever.

I’m always fascinated by how rational, sane adults-on both sides (ones who have mortgages and picket fences and sedans) could be so gullible and susceptible to such irrational and radical thinking.  I guess it takes all kinds to make the world go ‘round.

And the classic man?  No way! He’ll always keep it all in perspective.  He’ll play the game with a level head. He’ll keep driving in the middle of the road.  He’ll keep shooting it straight. He’ll say his prayers at night, and he’ll throw his plastic bottles into the right bin.  But he’ll do it all on his terms…

And he’ll never bow down to any false Gods.

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