This seems to be a common defense among those who wish to deny the evidence for climate change
It’s not a defense friend. It is a fact. The Pope’s infallibility extends to only faith and morals precisely to safeguard the faithful from following errant teachings in fields not in the Pope’s premit of authority. He is not a scientist. Please recall at one point in history the Pope agreed with the actual scientific consensus on Geocentrism. When Galileo disagreed with the theory he was not persecuted for proposing a scientific theory but for teachnig it as truth. Applying this principle to AGW it is clear who is teaching it as truth and not a hypothesis…the AGW lobby is. The Pope would do well to keep his distance from them. He may innocently believe that what the loudest voices are saying is an actual undisputed fact. I think nothing can be further from the truth.
and still think of themselves as faithful Catholics.
Sounds like a strawman to me. Do you think that George Le Maitre was unfaithful for disagreeing with the Pope of his day on scientific matters? How about Gregor Mendel disagreeing with a bishop or priest on genetic matters?
Disagreeing on science with the Pope doesn’t make one unfaithful. You are incorrect.
I think it’s dangerously misguided.
There is no good evidence to suggest it is. The only thing dangerous I think is forcing poor countries to pay taxes for using fossil fuels simply to stay warm and pull themselves out of poverty. The only thing dangerous is labeling plant food (CO2) poisonous without any evidence to substantiate the claim and making a circus of the scientific community all in the name of money for the few and keeping the gap between the rich and poor as wide as possible. The largest contributor to the rapid development and progress of poor countries over the last few decades is fossil fuels as they are relatively efficient and cheap. Try running industry on alternative energy and take good note of the environmental hazards with producing and maintaining these as compered to fossil fuels. It is dangerous also to make a religion out of a scientific hypothesis (anthropogenic global warming) especially when to this day has no significant empirical evidence to support it.
It’s clear that Pope Francis made caring for the climate an issue of faith and morals, so there is no wiggling out of it. Laudato Si is an encyclical that is every bit as authoritative as Humanae vitae.
I am all for caring for the environment. I do not think that CO2 is descructive to the environment. Higher levels result in better crop yield. And human food production (even in Africa) today is the best it has ever been to the point where we have more than enough food to feed the world right now (all 7 billion of us). Conflating caring for the environment with believing in an unproven hypothesis is what seems to be going on here with some people.
There is no scientific consensus on the moment when a fertilized egg becomes a human person.
There requires no consensus for this. Science doesn’t work on consensus. It works on evidence. There is sufficient evidence to show that a fertilized egg is alive and that it also has the same genetic composition as an adult human being. Therefore it is a human at a different developmental stage than an adolescent or mature adult. Most science texts and papers on embryology etc testify to this fact. Such as:
“Zygote. This cell, formed by the union of an ovum and a sperm (Gr. zyg tos, yoked together), represents the beginning of a human being. The common expression ‘fertilized ovum’ refers to the zygote.”
[Moore, Keith L. and Persaud, T.V.N. Before We Are Born: Essentials of Embryology and Birth Defects. 4th edition. Philadelphia: W.B. Saunders Company, 1993, p. 1]
However, JPII wrote that we must treat it as if it were a person out of an abundance of caution. The same can be said about climate change. We must alter our behavior and reduce carbon emissions out of an abundance of caution.
Not when the abundance of caution involves a plan that costs far more human lives than would be lost while adapting to naturally occurring climate change. A plan that and takes modern mankind into the stone age. All for what? To save 1 degree Celsius (best case scenario) over a 50 year period if ALL fossil fuel use was immediately ceased worldwide?
This has gone beyond any scientific debate. This is a ProLife issue that we are asked to embrace for moral reasons. If we don’t, millions will die and the deniers will be held accountable for their suffering.
As I said above this is a strawman argument.