It’s Not “Sexy”

There is a topic I don’t cover nearly enough despite it perhaps being the most threatening to mankind and therefore most important. I watch a lot of HGTV, especially late at night when my brain needs to unwind before bed. I will bring those two sentences together in the paragraphs below.

Unless we take significant action the greatest threat to mankind’s existence on this planet as we know it is climate change. Despite denials from one right wing political party (the American Republican party) that is the simple truth and reality. We will render much of the planet uncultivable and/or uninhabitable by man and sooner than many are willing to admit to unless we take actions to stem our harmful behaviors. To date we are not doing anything resembling an adequate, let alone good, job of that.

I have about as free a hand as anyone who writes op-eds. I control this site and all its content. The only (self imposed) constraint is that I only publish five days a week. I could violate that anytime I wanted to. Who is going to disciple me? So why don’t I write about climate change more often?

The answer is simple and it also explains why the topic doesn’t get the news coverage it should – it isn’t “sexy” enough. Most news outlets have to show a return on investment via clicks, ears and eyeballs. I don’t, but I still want to be read. This issue just isn’t catchy or sexy enough to accomplish that.

The best intentions of legitimate news outlets and myself often falls victim to the latest juicy piece of news (i.e. Trump, mass shootings, the pandemic, etc.) In the back of our minds, we all say to ourselves that we will cover climate change when this current issue is resolved or at least cools down. The problem with that is that inevitably a new hot topic arises (i.e. the war in Ukraine, elections, a scandal, etc.).

I won’t get into specifics but the clock is ticking and it doesn’t stop or slow down because of something stupid Donald Trump or Vladimir Putin does. Left unchecked climate change will win. It is that simple. I can’t be the only one who realizes that so why don’t voters take more action based on it alone? I will frame my answer with the American voter in mind. This is almost exclusively a partisan issue in America with Republicans willfully ignoring the problem. (Despite their rhetoric I refuse to believe that their leaders are too stupid to realize it exists. If you are looking for the key to their actions I suggest you look no further than greed.) So why not simply vote them out and in a few election cycles the problem is resolved; or at least the roadblock to a solution removed? The answer is that Democratic leaning voters are multiple issue voters and often Republican leaning voters are single issue voters so they simply fall in line behind the candidate who “tickles that fancy”. Check three or four boxes and you have the entire Republican voting base casting its ballots for you.

Climate change is not “sexy”. It’s like renovating a house. Waterproofing the basement and stabilizing the foundation are expensive and doesn’t dazzle like a new granite backsplash, nice countertop and hardwood flooring. A house without a nice backsplash, countertop and attractive hardwood flooring is safe; one with a foot of water in the basement and in danger of sinking isn’t. Your friends won’t be impressed by an otherwise pretty house that is uninhabitable.

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One thought on “It’s Not “Sexy””

  1. In the long run it will become undeniable that the greatest motivator of actions which harm the climate is overpopulation. When I was born (74 years ago) there were half as many people on the earth as there are now. We all know that every time we venture out in traffic. China’s one child policy was an early warning. Will we heed these warnings?

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