The designation of “expertise” is generally conferred because of someone’s education, training, or experience. Derek Jeter, after 20 years with the NY Yankees, has baseball expertise. The famous “Ragin’ Cajun” James Carville, running political campaigns since the mid-1980s, has political expertise.
She’s a child; I can’t possibly debate, let alone ridicule a child. She has no idea how the world works and cannot possibly grasp the inevitable consequences of her actions or beliefs.
Enter Greta Thunberg, the Swedish teen and international climate activist. Greta was recently on CNN, invited as an “expert” panelist on COVID-19 and climate change.
The thing is, Greta Thunberg has no expertise—and not because of a lack of passion or effort. She is neither educated, nor experienced in the subject for which she claims expertise. Yet few young people are more internationally recognized for their work.
Children are ignorant. I mean “ignorant” in the very literal sense: without knowledge. The acquisition of knowledge requires the very thing children are incapable of possessing: time. Children can be smart, can be idealistic, can be motivated and full of leadership skills—all while still being very clearly ignorant.
Now, I am very aware of the enormous advantage each and every adult has over Greta, myself included. She’s a child; I can’t possibly debate, let alone ridicule a child. She has no idea how the world works and cannot possibly grasp the inevitable consequences of her actions or beliefs.
I’m also exhausted by the platform she’s given, the gravitas she’s awarded, and the kid gloves we are all obligated to wear when discussing her work. If you criticize her beliefs or find flaws in the policies she promotes, you are the monster. You’re a child abuser. In a way, she’s the perfect spokesperson—she is untouchable.
But the world is no better, no cleaner, the environment no healthier but for Greta Thunberg. It is, however, a lot more accepting of ignorance. And that ignorance benefits two groups: the countries who pollute (like China), and the agenda-driven adults behind Greta.
THE PERFECT SPOKESPERSON FOR RADICAL CLIMATE POLITICS
Greta-the-climate-activist is the product of adults who manipulate her to push their own agenda—her parents and the adults, who are derelict in their role, and who use her for political gain. Without them, she most certainly was not capable of filing an international lawsuit through the United Nations Commission on the Rights of a Child. And yet, that’s exactly what she did, along with several other children from around the world, some as young as eight years old. (As a reminder, an eight-year-old is a third grader).
If a public figure said, “we need medicare for all because medicare for all is needed by everyone,” he’d rightfully get laughed off the campaign trail.
Greta, along with 15 children from various nations, including the United States, filed this lawsuit under the 1989 UN Convention of the Rights of the Child, which guarantees children the rights of life, health, and peace, and allows children to file lawsuits against countries who violate these rights. The 16 children in the landmark climate change lawsuit claim these countries are not doing enough to prevent climate change and keep CO2 emissions from rising, thus violating their rights by jeopardizing their future—a tremendous amount of legal expertise and bureaucratic machinations for young children.
Earlier this month, Greta and her co-signatories made a renewed push for their case. Your eight-year-old was probably figuring out subtraction of three-digit numbers, but not these kids. Coronavirus lockdown be damned, they are on the phone with lawyers and press from around the world.
The American child who signed onto the lawsuit on behalf of American youth, 14-year old Alexandria Villasenor, said, “Children are among the most vulnerable to the effects of climate change because … they face increased death and disease from it.” This circular definition is ignorant; we wouldn’t accept this fallacy from an adult advocating for radical policy. If a public figure said, “we need medicare for all because medicare for all is needed by everyone,” he’d rightfully get laughed off the campaign trail.
Yet, we tolerate and even accept the logical fallacy from a child, showing that children are the perfect spokesperson for radical climate politics.
(THE PARENTS OF) GRETA THUNBERG LET CHINA OFF THE HOOK
Greta and her litigious bunch filed suit against Argentina, Brazil, France, Germany, and Turkey, what they regard as “some of the world’s biggest greenhouse gas emitters,” based on the metric gigatons (GT) they emit. That’s wildly inaccurate. Even according to the unabashedly-leftist Union of Concerned Scientists data, Germany is somewhere in the top 10, but the other nations listed in the suit are negligible. Meanwhile, Russia emits 1.5GT, Japan emits 1.1GT, Iran emits 0.6GT— yet none of them were included in the lawsuit.
It’s almost as if reducing CO2 emissions isn’t really the goal at all.
Most curious is the omission of China, the world’s biggest emitter of CO2, at a whopping 9.3GT. Greta and friends are not suing China, but they are suing France for their 0.3GT, which is 1/30th of China’s contribution to the “existential threat” of climate change.
Of course, the children are probably ignorant of the facts about China, which is understandable—they’re children. The adults pulling all the strings, however, are not. Avoiding a confrontational stance toward China is certainly not a material decision based on the climate change agenda; it is a political one, made by adults who are experts in international politics.
It’s almost as if reducing CO2 emissions isn’t really the goal at all.
President Trump announced during the 2016 campaign that he intended to pull America out of the Paris Climate Accord, and the circus of international lawsuits and children’s campaigns. That hasn’t stopped silly lawsuits from happening here in America. More than 1,300 legal actions have been brought around the world to try to force governments to confront the climate crisis; almost 1,000 of those have been in the US.
The most high profile children’s lawsuit was rejected in January by the Ninth Circuit of all Courts. Suing the government to “do more” is not grounds for a suit. If it were, everyone who ever visited a DMV would have grounds to sue.
The ignorance of children is a perfect foil for activist adults pursuing climate change policies. Last September, millions of children protested worldwide. Greta joined school children in New York City and in Washington, DC, where I live; thousands marched from the White House to Congress. What child acquired the necessary permits for this large-scale event? The huge stage on Capitol Hill, the sound system, jumbotrons, diesel generators to power them (darn fossil fuels!), the port-o-johns, the liability insurance, etc. What child did all this leg work—not to mention floated the cost?
These children are being used as shields, ones that faceless adults with destructive green agendas can hide behind. It’s time to expose them both for what they are: cowards.
Greta is motivated. She is an ideologue. She has great leadership skills, but she is a child. As such, she doesn’t know what she doesn’t know. Adults do.
There’s an agenda they are pursuing, and whether it’s anti-Capitalist or pro-China or pro-Environment is really irrelevant. It’s political, pure, and simple, and they are using kids to accomplish it.
They know Greta is ignorant, and they use it for their own purpose. The adults in her life, mostly her parents, have failed her. They have violated her rights as a child. Perhaps it’s they who should be the plaintiffs in her lawsuits.