Confession of a Climate Change Denier

- Deep breath -

     I have a confession to make. There is a part of me that is a climate change denier.
     It resides somewhere in my subconscious. It doesn't affect my acknowledgement that climate change is being accelerated by human actions. But what it does affect is my response: I am frozen, I deny it.
     I wonder if I am not alone in this. Perhaps I share something with Senator Inhofe, or my cousin, or the guy on the radio yesterday. I wonder if deep down, there is too much pain in accepting the possibility that we have changed the world in a way that will cause suffering to millions of people, including our own children. I know I can barely write those words. Why do I have the ability to do so, whereas someone else really, really can't bear it -- so they bury it? 
     I am not so different. Yesterday I opened the paper and there was a story about the drive to repeal CAFE standards for automakers, the freakishly warm February we just had, warming oceans and the projected devastating effects on them -- then today's paper reported EPA chief Scott Pruitt says CO2 is not a primary contributor to global warming. I closed the paper. I didn't read any of those stories. It is just too painful. And that is a form of denial. Maybe Scott Pruitt is just one rung lower on the pain ladder than I am, and it hurts so much that he denies it's there. Or maybe on the spectrum of fight or flight, he's fight and I'm flight.
      In an odd way, I'm feeling connected to the people I want to blame. I'm not too good at wading into the dark muck and fighting. Whenever I call my Senators with a plea to do something, I start crying. So I don't. I rarely rally against anything. I don't go to activist meetings. I don't want to be surrounded by doom. So if I'm not part of the solution, I'm part of the problem, right? I'm kin with the deniers.
     I'm reaching out to the climate change skeptics and deniers right now, both hands. Not as a group, but as unique thinking and feeling people. Look deep within yourself: are you denying climate change because allowing the possibility opens the door to fear, fear for your future, your family, life as it has been? I get it. We're not so far apart. 
     Let's just leave it at that, for now. Pain as common ground. But maybe from that place... maybe we will be able to stop being frozen in our attitudes towards each other.
     Thank you to all of you who are out there pushing for actions, policies and technologies that will help us all. You are warriors for the good of the planet. We need you. I am eternally grateful.

     I am not a warrior, right now. But I'll keep helping as I can, with words, financial support and personal mindful choices. And with my hands extended to those who, like me, may be unable to look directly at the pain.