Jim Thompson
Jim Thompson

By Jim Thompson
HCP columnist

On Saturday evening, Nov. 17, I returned from a week of mission work in Guatemala.

Although very poor, the people are friendly, industrious and almost always have a smile on their face, even when their stomachs are empty.

I had spent several days digging septic tanks and pouring concrete floors for new, simple homes for these indigenous Mayan descendants whose sad history includes genocide and rejection.

Recognizing I only had a tiny part in the big scheme of things, I was nevertheless satisfied and pleased that I was able to do what little I could.

It took about five minutes for conditions in the United States to place me in a foul mood. At the Atlanta Airport, my destination, they have built a new international terminal with the requisite parking garage.

On the entry floor of this garage, there are the usual handicap parking places (a good thing) and then countless spaces reserved for car pool vans followed by countless spaces reserved for AFVs (Alternative Fuel Vehicles).

As a global warming skeptic who will never be in a car pool van or AFV unless forced to do so by the government, it hit me that I now know a little of what discrimination feels like.

Today, if you do not bow to the Global Warming/Climate Change/Carbon Footprint gods, you are deemed stupid, ignorant, lazy and unenlightened.

You don't deserve to park next to the door, you should feel lucky we even let you in the parking garage. Additionally, there are certain lanes on the expressways in which you are not allowed to travel.

I am not exactly stupid. I have a bachelor of science degree in mechanical engineering backed up with a 42-year career. All the U.S. states to which I applied, 25 of them, at one time or another, deemed me smart enough to award me a state license as a registered professional engineer.

 

 

This means I was recognized as having the skills and intelligence to be entrusted in those states to design certain devices and facilities which could endanger the human population if improperly created by those not recognized for such skills.

I know a little bit about science and engineering. Yet, because I do not subscribe to the alchemy drivel put forth by so-called scientists concerning the subjects of global warming, climate change and so forth, I am now a second-class citizen, relegated to inferior facilities.

It is not that I have not studied these subjects. I have. I have read voraciously on the subjects of global warming, climate change and related issues. The science is poor, so poor, in fact that if this quality of science were all that had been available to the Wright Brothers in search of aerodynamic principles, we would all still be taking trains.

All is not lost, however.

For by experiencing the discrimination of not swallowing the nonsense, I have been able, in some small way, to experience what it must have been like to have been discriminated against – as others throughout history have experienced.

All I would have to do is abandon all the science I was ever taught in order to be, once again, accepted. But I won't. For, to abandon real science for the alchemy of popular myths, would go against everything for which I stand.

By the way, there is a great story that captures the nonsense of discrimination and the hurt it brings, whether it was caused by your skin color, beliefs or whatever else the majority wishes to impose. It is Dr. Seuss's "The Sneetches."

I do drive a fairly efficient vehicle that on an economic basis meets my requirements: a 2012 Ford Focus Titanium that gets about 36 mpg (I have over 30,000 miles on it). However, just because it fits my needs does not mean it will please the liberal elitists who set the rules.

So, this brings forth a more interesting question: How are the poor ever to be able to afford a vehicle that allows them into the accepted class?

Will a 20-year-old Prius with an exhausted battery do? Or will the administration decide to just give them an AFV qualified vehicle?

After all, it is OK if an old conservative like me feels bad because of segregation – I obviously deserve it. But the 47 percent – that is another matter. We must not let them feel like they cannot fully participate in the enlightened society of today.

Jim Thompson, formerly of Marshall, is a graduate of Hillsboro High School and the University of Cincinnati. He resides in Duluth, Ga., following decades of wandering the world, and is a columnist for The Highland County Press.