Many prominent Republicans take issue with the Encyclical Letter, known as Laudato Si' (of the Holy Father Francis: On Care For Our Common Home), which was issued by the Pope May 24, of this year. This 'letter' is actually a very detailed call for action regarding the environmental crisis that is already affecting and will continue to impact the whole planet, especially the poor. The most outspoken opponent to the encyclical was Senator James Inhofe (R-OK), who notoriously brought in a snowball to the floor of the Senate to prove that man-made climate change is a hoax.
Yes indeed, he thinks the proven science of man-made climate change is total malarkey, perpetrated by those diabolical, worn-out-Honda Civic-driving scientists, always trying to make a 'buck,' and do their thankless jobs for the simple love of science. Inhofe, like many Congressional Republicans, takes millions of dollars from big oil. The comparison of money given to Republicans versus Democrats is pretty stark. Here are the numbers from only ONE company, Exxon Mobile, for the 2014 election cycle:
Total to Democrats: $146,000
Total to Republicans: $1,170,250
Total to Democrats: $25,500
Total to Republicans: $267,000
In Laudato Si, the Pope presents a very detailed science-based holy decree that addresses the impending catastrophe that will plague the earth if something is not done to halt the destruction of what he calls, 'our common home,' Planet Earth. Here's one of many statements to this effect.
This sister (Planet Earth) now cries out to us because of the harm we have inflicted on her by our irresponsible use and abuse of the goods with which God has endowed her. We have come to see ourselves as her lords and masters, entitled to plunder her at will. The violence present in our hearts, wounded by sin, is also reflected in the symptoms of sickness evident in the soil, in the water, in the air and in all forms of life.
Pope Francis touched on just a small part of the hundreds of tenets he espouses in his 99 page, very detailed letter today in Congress.
Here is Inhofe's response
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"As the Pope stated in his address, Congress has an important role to play in how the United States cares for our environment. When Congress and a White House administration work together, we can address environment policy in a way that improves Americans’ livelihoods while also protecting and even bolstering future economic opportunity for our nation.
"I know this first-hand as an original sponsor of the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990. Since the original Clean Air Act became law, Americans are breathing the cleanest air in several decades and we continue to reduce pollutants in our environment as a result of this policy. These environmental advancements have simultaneously taken place while our nation has increased its use of energy consumption by 47 percent, population has grown by 53 percent, and economic development has improved by 219 percent.
“Unfortunately, President Obama has taken a different approach during his time in office. He instead has worked for the past seven years to cut Congress out of environmental policy by way of regulatory overreach with his so-called Clean Power Plan.
"The president is even using these climate regulations to make promises to the international community that are unachievable and will have no measurable impact on his objective of changing global warming patterns. Instead, the president's climate policies will cost our economy $479 billion, increase electricity prices across the nation by double digits, and rob Americans of well-paying jobs and future economic growth. Those who stand to lose the most are the poor who spend the largest portion of their expendable income to heat their homes, as well as minority populations. As Harry Alford, president of the National Black Chamber of Commerce, highlighted before the EPW Committee this summer, the president’s climate policies will result in a cumulative job loss of 7 million for Blacks and nearly 12 million for Hispanics by 2035. The president’s climate agenda stands to create more poverty, not less.
“Congress does have an important role to play in our environment, and my committee has put forward bipartisan solutions, to include reforming the Toxic Substance Control Act, reauthorizing the Brownfields program, and sending EPA’s regulations back to the drawing board with suggested improvements from Congress. I hope the president will take heed to the Pope’s words, and he will consider the policies we are putting forward to care for our environment while also safeguarding America’s prosperity.” (What??) *emphasis mine
He ignores proven science in favor of the profitability of big oil. Inhofe is another selfish Republican who cares nothing for future generations, his own family included. He really missed the point of what Pope Francis so eloquently stated.