Here’s an example, my father-in-law has been visiting our home for Christmas day dinner for several years now. He’s a second generation dairy farmer and a conservative republican. (I think a lot of farmers are conservative republicans, and I sometimes wonder what they’re all afraid of?) He’s also a very wise man and knows a lot more about what’s goin on than you’d think. The problem this time is his refusal to accept the occurrence of climate change or global warming. With so many environmental signs pointing to the existence of this condition, I find it hard to believe that a man with his intelligence would dismiss it as a money-making scam invented by liberals. He’s the type that might call anyone with differing political views a Marxist and/or Communist.
And from what I’ve been told, it’s best that I not say anything to dispute his authority, even when the discussion is taking place here in my own house. Such was the case Christmas day, when the subject of environmental problems came up. I had mentioned hearing about the Mexican dairy industry and the problems they were having with excessive amounts of manure, I heard it on NPR one morning on the way to work. (My father-in-law mumbled a rude three-word epithet beginning with each letter of “NPR” but I’ll not repeat it.)
Farming, when it’s mainly crops you’re talking about, can be thought of as large scale gardening. So this is how I try to relate to my father-in-law when we’re conversing about farming or gardening. I suppose dairy farming is completely unrelated to gardening and/or global warming? It’s just that whenever I talk about gardening, I often mention something about the environment. Regarding climate change – either the environmental scientists are lying to us, or my father-in-law is God and answers to no one!