Friday, March 23, 2012

I See Skies of Blue

Nuthin' but bloooo sky...

That's what I see when I look straight up into the heavens today.

And I like it!

Don't you, too?  Sparkling and clear blue sky.  Kinda darker, the deeper into space you look, with a soft whitish tint as your gaze travels to just about the treeline.  The kind of blue that you really can't photograph unless you have an expensive camera, otherwise everything kinda seems faded.

Here in Texas, in August, blue skies like today's are rare, even though we have plenty of sunny days.  Smog tends to add a brownish-purple tinge to the sky on cloudless days, as the sun scorches the chemicals in our air.  But in the springtime, when breezes are more reliable, and the air hasn't yet been cooked by the summer sun, the blue is as blue as blue skies should be.

Bluer than the signature powder-blue gift boxes at Tiffany's.  But not the cold blue of ordinary sunny days during the winter.

In a way, if you think about it, blue skies provide an indisputable testament to the validity of Creation science.  How so?  Well, consider how the pollutants we humans have introduced to our atmosphere over the past century or so.  Pollutants created from the mixing and emissions of chemicals which had never before taken place on our planet in such quantities and concentrations until the 1900's.

How would an evolutionist explain the fact that the chemical make-up of the atmosphere was prepared for the introduction of these new "man-made" chemicals?  Why didn't the atmosphere simply explode or ignite when these new chemical compositions reached the stratosphere?  How did evolution prepare the gasses - that previously existed uninterrupted up there for so long - for such a relatively new phenomenon as non-organic compounds invading such a previously untested environment?

Was it luck that our atmosphere didn't react in violent convulsions from the unanticipated intrusion of new chemicals into the air?  I understand that people who believe evolutionary theory say that some evolution cycles are faster than others, but with all of the pollution we've introduced into the atmosphere, shouldn't we be seeing some sort of evolutionary repercussions?

Of course, evolutionists say we are:  the melting ice caps, the rising sea levels, the loss of biodiversity.  That's evolution's way of reacting to man's pollution of our air, they claim.

And unlike many evangelicals, I don't doubt that man-made pollution is bad for the environment.  I wonder how many conservatives today would want to live in the Cleveland of the 1960's, when the Cuyahoga River caught fire from all of the chemicals being dumped into it.  How many Republicans in California get sick from all the smog - smog that used to blanket cities across the United States until pollution controls were enacted to help clean the air?

Pollution and its effects are indisputable, and all of our lives are better for efforts to reduce it.  And it's impossible to prove that all of the chemicals we've pumped into the air are not causing some impact on any possible changes to our climate.  But it's also impossible to prove the extent of that effect.  After all, the Earth has been colder before, and it's been warmer.  What about the Ice Age?  Something heated up, otherwise we'd still be living in the Ice Age, right?  So while pollution needs to be fought against, we can't blame it entirely for all of the ills some hard-line environmentalists want to.

Does that mean that we Americans need to adopt even more-stringent rules to further eliminate pollution?  Well, that depends, doesn't it, on what our fellow planetary citizens do to help with our air quality.  After all, we're not the globe's only polluters, and just as the rest of the world consumes our air, we also consume theirs.  So how are the subsistence farmers who burn piles of methane-releasing dung in Africa going to reduce their emissions?  How are the masses of impoverished people around the world who heat and cook by burning unregulated oil going to reduce their emissions?  How are all of the countries who burn coal while shunning modern air-scrubbing smokestack technology going to reduce their emissions?

Pollution isn't only an American problem, just as global warming may be more cyclical than some scientists want to admit.

Global warming still doesn't answer my original question, either.  Sure, we may be seeing some severe biological reactions to pollution now, but in the grand scheme of things, they're hardly cataclysmic.  Human lifespans around the world continue to increase - we're not dying off in droves from air-borne pollution.  Plenty of other predatory practices are contributing to the loss of biodiversity, not just pollution.  And we're still able to breathe the same air that existed on this planet before Columbus discovered the New World.

Yes, as good stewards of God's creation, we need to clean it up a bit more.  "Rule and subdue" doesn't mean "plunder and destroy."  Our forefathers kinda went overboard on the pollution thing back during the Industrial Revolution, and even today, our major chemical companies have only moved the worst of their business practices to impotent Majority World countries where people don't realize they're being exposed to carcinogens that North Americans wouldn't dare breathe.  Those people don't necessarily see the same blue sky I'm enjoying today.

And when I don't see this blue sky in August here in Texas, and I know it's because of pollution, I have greater sympathy for those folks in places like China, Bangladesh, India, and even parts of Russia where environmental regulations are mired in sub-human standards.

Still, the proof I see in skies like today's here in Texas give me hope, because not only is my heavenly home somewhere up beyond the farthest reaches of the space crowning this air, but this air helps prove that my God truly is great.  He created this air knowing that people like me would take it for granted and pollute it. And He designed it to accommodate just enough pollution to serve as a warning as to how important clean air is to our well-being.

And in the words of Louis Armstrong, "I think to myself, what a wonderful world!"
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