Is the U.S. seen as the world’s “last bastion” of climate change denial?
“The church bulletin inserts are nearly ready to go,” claims the New York Times. So are the emails to every Roman Catholic parish in the United States with preaching suggestions for the first Sunday after Pope Francis releases his “encyclical” (report) on the environment.
A week after that, on June 28th, churches worldwide are being asked to ring their bells at noon to commemorate a “Thank you, Pope Francis” march in Rome being held on that day.
Never before, say church leaders, has a papal encyclical been anticipated so eagerly by so many.
Advocates for the environment and the poor are excited, because Francis is expected to make the case that climate change, unchecked development, and over-consumption are exacerbating problems for the poor.
However, the leaders of the Catholic Church in the United States may be harder to win over, writes the New York Times.
At the spring meeting of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops last week, bishops from around the country said they were withholding their enthusiasm until they saw the document on Thursday the 18th of June, writes The New York Times.
Some said they were wary about getting the church enmeshed in the debate over climate change, a contentious issue in the United States.
They also expressed concern about allying with environmentalists, some of whom promote “population control” as a remedy, since the Church sees abortion and contraception as “great evils” writes The New York Times.
Archbishop Thomas G. Wenski of Miami gave a presentation to the bishops on the climate change encyclical as chairman of the committee on domestic justice and human development.
He said the pope’s message would ultimately “transcend” the divisions over the environment and climate change, writes The New York Times.
“The pope is not approaching this as a scientist, he’s not approaching this as a politician,” Archbishop Wenski said at a news conference. “I think he’s trying to approach the issue of creation care as a pastor and as a teacher.”
In the U.S., climate change is still being debated among many. Above is a vintage video from 2014 of Republican Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn and Bill Nye debating climate change on NBC’s Meet The Press.
Is it “intellectually consistent” to have cold winters and still believe in global warming?
Global warming is all about averages. What if the average summer temperature goes up by one degree, but the average winter, spring, and fall temperatures stay the same? That means the average yearly temperature will still go up slightly (because the summer was hotter). But the winter temperature was still the same = still cold.
What if the area where you live has the same temperature every year, but the average temperature in the desert keeps going up? Or the average temperature of the oceans?
Do the current droughts and floods in the U.S. relate to global warming? One of California’s biggest sources of water – the mountain snowpack – is practically already gone for the rest of the summer.
Scientist Bill Nye sent out a tweet linking the flooding to global warming, with predictable results.
NFL American Football team owners approved a Competition Committee’s proposal on extra points for the 2015 season, writes nfl.com.
The NFL announced the extra point will now be kicked from the 15-yard line as opposed to within the 10-yard line, with two-point conversions remaining at the 2-yard line.
The new rule also gives the defense the ability to score two points on returns.
According to the rule change, if the defense returns a blocked extra point or failed two-point try for a touchdown (i.e. on an interception), they will be awarded two points, writes nfl.com.
Under the previous rule, on a failed try, the ball was a “dead ball” and could not be moved.
NFL Vice President of Officiating Dean Blandino said teams could change their attempt decision if a penalty occurs.
The approved rule, which was decided by a 30-2 vote by owners, was one of three proposals considered by owners on Tuesday at the NFL’s Spring League Meeting, writes nfl.com.
Owners considered a proposal by the New England Patriots similar to the adopted plan, but without the defense’s ability to score. A plan proposed by the Philadelphia Eagles called for a 15-yard Point After Touchdown (PAT) and the ball on the 1-yard line for two-point tries.
The NFL has been tinkering with the PAT in hopes of making it a more difficult and therefore entertaining play for spectators. The latest change might be just the first step of further adjustments in years to come.
NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport also reported that the Redskins‘ proposal to have roster cuts done all at once – moving from 90-man to 53-man rosters prior to the start of the season – was voted down by owners, per a source.