Sept. 19 — To the Editor:
Why should any millennial voter heed the plea of a first-wave “baby boomer” (b. 1946) about their vote in the 2016 presidential and congressional elections? My generation’s self-involved, self-congratulatory mythology can certainly be tiresome. But twenty to thirty years from now, most “baby boomers” will be gone, suffering some degree of discomfort during our lifetimes from climate change depending upon our location and wealth, but escaping the worst of the dislocations in territory, food supply, tropical diseases and water resources. However, the dangers to our children, grandchildren and great grandchildren will be unlike anything experienced in human history. The overwhelming majority of scientists understand that climate change is a looming disaster, a view supported both by theory and experimental data. The period 2000-2008 was a desperately-needed, but missed, opportunity to at least begin slowing the rate of increase in the Earth’s temperature. President Obama has quite rightly recognized that, in the long-term, man-made climate change is far more threatening to our planet than terrorism or wars between countries. He has taken whatever action he can, despite well-funded opposition and disinformation from the fossil fuel industry, most Republicans and a few Democrats, to at least slow its course.
A President Hillary Clinton will continue Obama’s successful national and international initiatives and hopefully accelerate them. And what does Donald Trump have to say? He has ridiculed man-made climate change as a conspiracy hatched by the Chinese. Expect no progress during a Trump regime. And what of the Libertarian candidate Gary Johnson? He believes that, if there is the need, independent citizens can go to court against lawyers representing the American Petroleum Institute, the Koch brothers, Exxon-Mobil, etc. To this, I say “Here! Here! It is every citizen’s inalienable right to be crushed in court.”
Hence my plea to our youngest voters: please vote for your futures which will, according to the actuarial tables, be far longer than mine (and those of Donald Trump, Hillary and Bill Clinton, and Gary Johnson).