One of the things that I think is really important is that we need to engage with each other. As Westerners, we are at the forefront of climate change. We have fires, droughts, floods and we are running out of water. If people don’t dialogue, it’s really problematic, because even those who don’t believe that climate change is of human origin still experience its impacts. These are still decisions we must make as communities.
So I think this idea of infinite resources is extremely problematic. This idea of rain following the plow, predating any idea of climate change, was a myth that somehow if you introduced agriculture to a land it would make it rain more. It’s very dangerous.
There are also these ideas of the West as a homeland. This, for me too, is very heavy. As I mentioned in “American Zion,” when the Latter-day Saints came to the West, they had a concept of homeland, and it was placed above indigenous lands. So there were these homelands on several levels.
Now you have the American Redoubt [a conservative, Christian movement whose followers are relocating from blue states to Idaho, Montana and other inland northwest states], arriving, trying to create homelands here. So there is this Christian nationalism, which really gives the impression of waiting for a civil war or the second coming. This has a really big impact on communities. I happen to have some incredibly fierce friends, who are conservative Republicans, who are fighting tooth and nail against extremism in the Idaho Panhandle. The myth of the homeland is truly dangerous.
When it comes to climate change, if you [accept] According to biblical literalism, “God will provide for us, we don’t really have to worry about that.” It’s up to God…