Online Comments- vitriolic and illogical

By Andy Barnett.

The Minneapolis Star Tribune published this essay online. It is from the heart:

http://www.startribune.com/opinion/commentary/79644972.html

Note that the comments fall into two categories:

1) Vitriolic climate skeptics who sound VERY similar to Sean Hannity, Glenn Beck, and the rest of the right-wing noise machine.
2) People who think climate change is an urgent problem that requires global response.

When the Yale Center for Environmental Law and Policy sponsored “Global Warming’s Six Americas” they suggested that Americans fall into these categories

“Alarmed (18%),
Concerned (33%),
Cautious (19%),
Disengaged (12%),
Doubtful (11%), and
Dismissive (7%).”

I’m fascinated by the Op-Ed comments on the Star Tribune site. Seems like the “Dismissive” group was fired up as soon as they read the essay. While they are entitled to their opinions and their views are important, they certainly did not convey respect or clear thinking. Then the “Alarmed” and “Concerned” felt like they needed to counter-attack.

This back and forth on such a massive issue seems counter-productive. Is it possible to write so that we can attain common ground? Or are these comments just coming from crazy people?

If we’re going to get 60 Senate votes on the “Clean Energy Jobs and American Power Act” (S.1733), we will need to move past this bickering.

Senator Kerry and Dr. Pachauri spoke briefly after Kerry's talk at the Bella Center

Senator Kerry and Dr. Pachauri spoke briefly after Kerry's talk at the Bella Center