What Church Should Catholic Climate Deniers Join?

♠ Posted by Emmanuel in , at 4/30/2015 01:30:00 AM
Marco Rubio, other American climate change deniers should bear the US flag at SSPX's get-togethers.
The past two popes have been firmly ensconced in the green camp. That is not to say that there are any number of Catholic climate change deniers. Oftentimes two things go together: conservatism and climate change denial. I myself am of the "reluctant environmentalist" stripe: Sure I'd love to consume fossil fuels and throw away non-biodegradable petrochemical-based products with reckless abandon. However, as a reasonable person mindful of the impact of my way of life and how it affects others as well as future generations, I am more circumspect. As with most science, we cannot be entirely "sure" that man-made climate change is occurring. Rather, the overwhelming weight of scientific evidence suggests anthropogenic climate change is happening. Following the precautionary principle--we cannot be fully certain about man-made climate change, but the consequences of ignoring this not-unreasonable possibility are too horrific to contemplate--it is advisable for societies to cooperate on steps to mitigate the phenomenon.

Following this line of thinking, I applaud Pope Francis placing emphasis on the issue and await his forthcoming encyclical about it. The leader of the church should speak about meaningful contemporary issues, no? However, the "Republican" wing of the Catholic church is, ah, reheating the same old chestnuts beloved of these deniers:
“The Holy Father is being misled by ‘experts’ at the United Nations who have proven unworthy of his trust,” Joseph Bast, president of the Heartland Institute, a libertarian think tank based in Chicago, and one of the organizers of the press conference denouncing Francis on Monday. 

“Humans are not causing a climate crisis on God’s Green Earth – in fact, they are fulfilling their Biblical duty to protect and use it for the benefit of humanity,” Mr. Bast continued in a statement released Monday. “Though Pope Francis’s heart is surely in the right place, he would do his flock and the world a disservice by putting his moral authority behind the United Nations’ unscientific agenda on the climate,” he said in a statement, contradicting the vast majority of world’s climate scientists.”  
Francis’s popularity among Catholics could prove politically difficult for many Catholic Republicans, including presidential hopefuls Jeb Bush, Chris Christie, Bobby Jindal, Marco Rubio, and Rick Santorum, most of whom, too, express skepticism about the science of climate change.
Just as the Americans made a ruckus some time ago about leaving British rule called the "War of Independence," I think it's high time that these so-called Catholics in the US sever ties with those other imperialist Europeans at the Vatican. Down with this popery! So they may not like Protestantism and all its denominations, but there are other schismatic options for the Marco Rubio bunch. In particular, I commend to them the Society of St. Pius X [SSPX] which denies the changes made during Vatican II to make church proceedings more relevant to the laity such as delivering the Mass in local languages and facing the congregation and not the altar during Eucharistic celebrations.

Being ever so backward looking, Catholic climate change deniers would fit right in with these folks who haven't recognized changes the church has made since, oh, 1962. Not that we haven't tried to reason with these folks:
Pope Benedict launched a series of doctrinal discussions with the SSPX in 2009, lifting excommunications imposed on its four bishops, who were ordained in 1988 without papal approval, and expressing his hopes they would return to full communion with the church. In 2011, the Vatican gave SSPX leaders a "doctrinal preamble" to sign that outlines principles and criteria necessary to guarantee fidelity to the church and its teaching; the Vatican said the SSPX leaders would have to sign it to move toward full reconciliation.

But [SSPX Superior General] Bishop Fellay said he repeatedly told the Vatican that the contents of the preamble -- particularly acceptance of the modern Mass and the council as expressed in the Catechism of the Catholic Church -- were unacceptable. He said the only reason he continued discussions with Vatican officials was because others "very close to the pope" had assured him that the pope was not in agreement with hard-line official pronouncements from the Vatican. 
Some people prefer to live in the past. I think the vast majority of the US "Catholic" Republicans mentioned above should definitely join those who revel in it. (SSPX's antagonistic position on Judaism may be a deal-breaker, though.) The rest of us have long since chosen to move on guided by faith and reason.