The empowered conservative blogosphere was recently alight with outrage over Papa Frank’s suggestion that the coronavirus might be one of nature’s responses to climate change. Breitbart commenter John Truman Jr. received over a thousand upvotes for responding as follows:
“Francis preaches the anti-gospel of Karl Marx. He is a leftist activist when we need a spiritual leader. Worst. FakePope. Ever.”
Laying petty politics aside, the Supreme Catholic Diversity Warrior might have a point, although he reaches poor conclusions elsewhere. Frank’s opinion harkens back to the George Carlin bit where the comedian predicted that nature would eventually get rid of humans and then proceed to “heal and cleanse itself.” He added that the planet might use VIRUSES to eliminate the human population, referencing HIV.
Sure, coronavirus hasn’t been all that devastating yet, but some peculiar data did emerge concerning pollution. In Venice, a drop in canal boat traffic left the waterways looking clear and beautiful when compared to before. Across the Atlantic, reports suggest a 30 percent decline in air pollution for the Northeastern United States, attributed in large part to the lower flight totals caused by the outbreak. Similar information has emerged in India due to less airline usage.
What’s interesting is that prior to these developments, suggesting policies to avoid sharp population growth in the West (and the accompanied pollution it entails) was responded to with the “Ecofascism” or “EcoNazism” slurs. Now we see how much of a toll globalization, mass immigration, and liberal transport policy have had on the environment, all because of a pandemic.
Will attitudes change for the good of the planet, or are we destined for a Carlinist judgment day?