You can’t believe in God AND believe in global warming


Update: Former Secretary of State George Shultz must be one of us! Hail & welcome to the non-believers sir!

Outside of the implausibility of religious claims about magic floods and rising from the dead, there is also the day-to-day ugliness that turns many off like a light switch. Racism, sexism, intolerance, a long history of brutal acts and justifying the most un-Christ-like behavoir imaginable, all given religious cover. And then there is the sheer mendacity. Take it away Rush!

Think Progress — According to Limbaugh, Kerry’s prayerful call to protect the planet was simply too much for the mind to handle:”See, in my humble opinion, folks, if you believe in God, then intellectually you cannot believe in manmade global warming … You must be either agnostic or atheistic to believe that man controls something that he can’t create. — Rush Limbaugh”

Rush Limbaugh may not be a master of theological nuance. Still, his core assertion — that someone can’t believe in God while also believing that humanity has contributed to global climate change — dusts off an old conservative myth that, like climate change-denying in general, ignores data, facts, and the lived experience of billions of people across the globe.

Well good news, we’re all OK here on FtB then, we’re allowed to “believe in” thermometers. Unless you are lurking believer, and accept basic science. You heretic!

Rush isn’t the only one to say this of course. It’s been a right-wing evangelical trope for quite a while. It’s kind of vague and confusing, exactly how it works, which is perfect for a certain kind of confused, vague mindset we all know too well. It’s something along the lines of after God created the heaven and the earth and committed planetary genocide with the flood of Noah, He promised he wouldn’t so that any more. That includes any changes to the climate, He won’t allow us to change that. Despite the fact that He has given us dominion over the earth … like I said, they’re still working out the kinks in this particular theology.


  1. Randomfactor says

    So I have to give up ignorant faith for me and my fellow humans to survive?

    Sounds like a fair exchange. Sign me up.

  2. TxSkeptic says

    I have to give it Rush, he’s more right than he knows. It’s just that he sits on the wrong side of the fence. It’s like asking what two plus two is. You can’t believe that it is both 4 and 5. Rush would agree, but would choose 5 as the answer.

  3. StevoR : Free West Papua, free Tibet, let the Chagossians return! says

    You can’t believe in God AND believe in global warming

    Actually there is at least one evangelical Christian climate scientists – Katherine Hayhoe – who disproves that line by existing. See her interviewed here :

    There are also liberal Christians such as Fred Clark who runs the Slacktivist blog and Jim Wallis who runs the Sojourner blog and thousands more who do believe in both the reality of HIRGO* and in their diety of choice.

    So, yeah, Limbaugh got this wrong as well maintaining his pretty close to 100% record of being wrong.

    * Human-Induced Rapid Global Overheating because it describes it plainest and best and avoids the positive implications of being “nice’n’warm” in my view.

  4. StevoR : Free West Papua, free Tibet, let the Chagossians return! says

    See for instance here :

    For Fred Clark & here :

    For the Sjourners blog articles on HIRGO* and even from here :

    “Evangelical Leaders Swing Influence Behind Effort to Combat Global Warming” By Laurie Goodstein
    published 2005 March 10th in The New York Times’ online newspaper -probl’y in their print edition too.

    The Rev. Ted Haggard, president of the National Association of Evangelicals, an umbrella group of 51 church denominations, said he had become passionate about global warming because of his experience scuba diving and observing the effects of rising ocean temperatures and pollution on coral reefs.

    Yep. Flippin’ Ted “completely heterosexual” Haggard of all people believes in HIRGO* even!

    * See bottom of #5.


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