In Paul Schrader’s film First Reformed, a local pastor played by Ethan Hawke meets with a man named Michael who is overcome with deep anxiety. Michael’s home office walls are plastered with charts documenting the rise in average global temperature. A video rendering of this data loops on his computer screen. The two discuss the consequences of global climate change — heat waves, droughts, extreme precipitation, declining food production – before Michael asks the pastor his key question: “How do you sanction bringing [a child] into this world?”
With a global climate crisis escalating (and the rhetoric around it even more so), this is a very real question for many people. Gracy Olmstead writes in The New York Times with a perspective worth considering:
...it’s important to argue for children and their parents and for the essential role they can both play in this urgent work of planetwide stewardship going forward.
The act of creation is opposed to the act of consumption: The latter suggests that everything exists to serve our needs and appetites, but the other reminds us of the value and goodness inherent in things themselves, and how creation encourages stewardship and responsibility.
Read "Don’t Let Climate Change Stop You From Becoming a Parent". Check out this recent post from Alan Jacobs for a reasoned perspective on climate change in general.