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GOP To Kill Off Endangered Species For Fossil Fuels...Which Kills Humans
The short-sightedness of the GOP is Idiocracy's echo in Congress.
Have you ever seen the movie Idiocracy? One of the main character's challenges in the movie is the futuristic society he’s time traveled to is using the sports drink “Brawndo” to water all their crops. They idiotically believe that since “Brawndo” has electrolytes, it can address the failing crops due to severe drought and dwindling water supplies. Of course, this decision proves disastrous. The characters soon discover that “Brawndo” is not actually water; it is an energy drink loaded with sugar and artificial substances, entirely unsuitable for irrigation purposes. As a result, the crops wither, and the environment becomes even more unsustainable.
That specific problem parallels some of our problems today with a Republican majority in Congress.
In the real world, burning fossil fuels, such as coal, oil, and natural gas, releases greenhouse gases into the atmosphere, contributing to climate change. Despite mounting scientific evidence and international agreements to address the issue, there has been resistance to significant policy changes from the right. Political and economic interests tied to the fossil fuel industry make the decisions, resulting in a Republican Party unwilling to implement comprehensive and sustainable solutions to combat climate change.
Like the disastrous consequences of using “Brawndo” for irrigation, the short-sighted focus on fossil fuels can have severe environmental ramifications. Rising global temperatures, extreme weather events, and sea-level rise are among the effects already being experienced. The neglect of transitioning to cleaner and more sustainable energy sources risks exacerbating these problems, creating a less habitable and sustainable future for our planet.
The lesser prairie chicken.
The cute little bird at the top of this article is the lesser prairie chicken. Until this week, I never even knew what the lesser prairie chicken was. I learned a lot about it thanks to Congressman Ronny Jackson and a Twitter post.
Besides the apparent fact that Dr. Ronny seems to be high out of his mind, he speaking about how the Biden administration is attempting to save the lesser prairie chicken at the cost of the agricultural and energy industry.
Pro tip: when a Republican says “energy industry,” they mean fossil fuels.
Regarding the agricultural industry, there’s no telling what Mr. Jackson meant. Perhaps he didn’t know the difference between a lesser prairie chicken and the types of chicken we eat, “domesticated broiler chickens.” But he wasn’t speaking about the lesser prairie chickens’ homelands because they graze where farmers are. He talked about lesser prairie chickens because they feed on top of the Permian Basin, where oil moguls drill oil wells.
The entire GOP argument, which can be seen in this C-Span video, was that in 2012 there were 20,000 lesser prairie chickens, and some private landowners voluntarily participated in conservation, now there are 30,000 lesser prairie chickens, so they don’t have to go on to the endangered species list. They tried to paint it as some malicious act of the Biden administration to protect lands over the Permian Basin (and the Denver Basin) to stop oil drilling and not to save the cute little chickens.
However, a report by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service says: “Voluntary conservation efforts have helped conserve key habitat for the lesser prairie chicken but have not demonstrated an ability to offset the threats and reverse the trends of habitat loss and fragmentation facing the lesser prairie chicken.”
This is because of climate change and how extreme weather is pushing the lesser prairie chicken off of its once-safe habitats. As the Congressman's Twitter post demonstrates, there is a lack of concern for the preservation of endangered species when it conflicts with the interests of the fossil fuel industry.
“The science is clear — the lesser prairie chicken will disappear from our grasslands without these protections,” said Marshall Johnson, chief conservation officer from the National Audubon Society.
Republicans are willing to kill entire species to protect the fossil fuel industry.
We all know how hot it’s been in Texas, and this summer has been above average, but let’s take a look at a few other climate change-related headlines around the world:
That’s just the tip of it. Hundreds of thousands of marine animals have been washing up on beach shores, almost all of Sicily is on fire, and people are going to the hospital in Arizona with third-degree burns from touching concrete or metal outside. To summarize, the climate crisis is really bad and only getting worse. We might be fucked without radical actions to mitigate climate change soon.
Yet, in the halls of Congress, Republicans are talking about killing entire species of animals off to protect the interests of the fossil fuel industry.
Make no mistake about it; based on the reports from conservationists, the lesser prairie chicken will be wiped off of the face of this earth without intervention. And Republicans blocked intervention to save the lesser prairie chicken because they pull in big dollars from the fossil fuel industry each election season. For the GOP, oil moguls matter more than an entire species of animal.
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