Critically acclaimed, invigorating the climate debate, successful at the box office and now nominated for an Oscar, "An Inconvenient Truth" has been one success story for Al Gore so far. But now resistance is stirring. Evangelical Christians in the U.S. want to prevent their children from seeing the documentary. And have their own explanation for climate change.
"Our nation – the greatest nation" The email received by the school lacked nothing in explicitness or aggressiveness, despite the stilted sentence construction, "No, you will not show or teach my child this Al Gore propagandist video that blames our nation – the greatest nation that has ever existed on this planet – for global warming."Meant was the documentary film "An Inconvenient Truth", also successful in Germany, which warns of catastrophic consequences of climate change and environmental destruction. The relevant school board in Washington state reacted promptly: spooked, it cancelled screenings of the film in Seattle and area schools as part of science classes. However, after protests against this censorship in anticipatory obedience, it eventually released the film. Especially since Al Gore's film, which was only defeated by a razor-thin margin in the presidential election by George W. Bush failed, has since been nominated for an Oscar.But the Oscar nomination has only emboldened letter-writer Frosty Hardiman, who describes himself as an evangelical Christian, in his action. Expressing the conviction that "the liberal left has a firm grip on Hollywood". The controversy in Seattle is not an isolated incident. Evangelical parents in other parts of the country are also campaigning against a screening of the documentary, hoping to banish the ie of climate change from classrooms as well as the unpopular topics of sex education and the teaching of evolution – both complexes have long been in the crosshairs of fundamentalist Christians in America. Renewed debate – about principles Along the way, these debates are also helping to reinvigorate the currently lively discussion in the U.S. about climate change and to re-emphasize the ideological – or religious – contrasts that divide the country on this ie as well as on important others: from the war in Iraq to immigration to the abortion ie. But the fact that even President Bush spoke of climate change and protection for the first time in his State of the Union address Tuesday night could prompt a rethink, at least among the political right, if not the religious right.In Seattle, at least, Al Gore's film is now being shown again; other schools still have this controversy ahead of them. Yet America's evangelical Christians are by no means in the majority behind fundamentalists like Hardiman, who writes in email, on this ie. Various church spokesmen warn of threat to divine creation from human emissions. Leading evangelical church leaders last week joined prominent climate scientists in launching an initiative against global warming, calling on President Bush in an open letter to do more to protect the environment. "God will hold us accountable for the destruction of creation," insisted Rich Cizik, a spokesman for the influential National Evangelical Association.Hardliners like Hardiman, however, who find the truths of Gore and climate scientists too uncomfortable, don't see the warming of the planet as a threat. On the contrary. They understand them positively: as "one of the signs" of Christ's imminent return.