Proof of a “Climate Change” We’ve Failed to Consider and Its Terrible Consequences

Jul 12, 2023 by David Fowler

Proof of a “Climate Change” We’ve Failed to Consider and Its Terrible Consequences
Proof of a “Climate Change” We’ve Failed to Consider and Its Terrible Consequences
I read a legal brief by a Christian policy organization last week that was, for me, incontrovertible proof of “climate change”-- but not the kind that most readily comes to mind. Understanding this “climate change” is critical. You need to read this if you are upset about the transgender craze among our youth or got tired of follow-the-science government mandates during the COVID scare.
The climate change of which I speak is a “climate of opinion,” meaning the cultural air that so envelopes our thinking that leading 20th century historian Carl Becker said that air, rather than strict logic, determines whether certain arguments have a ring of credibility to us.[1]
What Becker posits, and I firmly believe to be true, is that a “world pattern determines the character and direction” of our thinking (for more on this pattern and its effect, check out this God, Law & Liberty podcast). And the current pattern, he says, “has been a long time in the weaving.” It is that of 18th century philosophers. These so-called philosophers concluded that all we could know was a non-objective form of history (dates and events only) and, not surprisingly, only “brute facts” about ourselves and the universe because there was no “agency” (i.e., God) behind anything.
According to Becker, since the 18th century, “[s]cience has taught us the futility of trying to understand the ‘underlying agency’ of the things we use.” “[O]ur supreme object is to measure and master the world.” Thus, “theology, philosophy, and deductive logic” are of “relatively little use.” “So long as we can make efficient use of things, we feel no irresistible need to understand them.”[2]
In sum, over the last two plus centuries the “climate of opinion” has so radically changed that “it is quite impossible for us to conceive of existence as a divinely ordered drama, the beginning and end of which is known, the significance of which has once for all been revealed.  For good or ill we must regard the world as a continuous flux.”[3]
The 18th century philosophers, and those who followed in their stead, thought mankind could create a “heavenly” city by scientific manipulation of the facts, even those of history since we were the ones to give meaning to its facts. Away, they said, with the chains of God’s eternal decrees—No God, no master!
The Climate of Opinion in Law that the 18th Century Philosophers Changed.
Preceding and ultimately competing with and succumbing to this view was that of Samuel Rutherford expressed in his book, Lex Rex, published in 1644. However, it drew upon the work in common law of those who had become before him, like Henry de Bracton in the 13th century.
In sum, Rutherford drew upon that history to assert that law (Lex) made the King (Rex), not the other way round, and the King was always subject to the law. Thus Lex Rex.
Law, of course, meant the eternal law of God then formulated as natural law which, by means of reason and the clarifying aid of Scripture, was contextually worked out in what was called the common law.
This itself was a climate of opinion change. Prior to the introduction of Christianity and its God of the “divinely ordered drama” into the stream of human thought and understanding in Western Europe, the king was the law. There was no law preceding the word of the King by which the King’s command could be judged as good or bad law.
Prior to Christendom, the climate of opinion would have been Rex Lex, not Lex Rex.
How the 18th Century Climate of Opinion Changed Law Today.
Today, the climate of opinion Becker described is that of evolutionary thinking, meaning the cosmos is defined by and operates according to a strict mechanical application of a different kind of natural law—a law of pure nature. There is nothing supernatural; there is no “agency” behind this law’s existence or directing its employment toward any purpose or end.
Therefore, of necessity, nothing has any objective meaning or final purpose. That is why there is nothing but brute fact. Consequently, only those who know how to manipulate that universe of facts—scientists—have the requisite “knowledge” to play the role that God had previously played.
Modifying Rutherford’s formulation, the physical/biologicals sciences are now god. The new god’s priests—scientists and doctors—by their scientific investigations declare to us what this god’s laws are for every situation. The legislature and the people are to obey.
This is how you get COVID mandates that can’t be questioned. The new “God” and his priests, Fauci and his ilk, have spoken, and there is no other God to whom we can appeal for the justice of the law they declare.
The fools who rejected the real God simply got others in His place!
The Brief Demonstrating Christian Capitulation to the New Climate.
The climate change of the 18th century that I have described worked its way into the brief I initially referenced. The organization that filed the brief described itself as “a nonprofit research and educational organization that seeks to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy from a biblical worldview.”
The Bible certainly informs the organization’s moral values, but perhaps not so much its overarching worldview, i.e., its cosmology. Here is why.
The brief urged a federal district court to discount the arguments of certain scientists and medical professionals who were in favor of transgender treatments for minors. Those professionals, the brief pointed out, had conflicts of interest that undermined their credibility. All well and good, but here is the summation of the Christian organization’s argument:   
Given the mounting evidence that these sterilizing interventions harm children and the absence of any long-term studies demonstrating their safety and effectiveness, Kentucky’s law is necessary to protect children. (emphasis supplied)
I have no problem with putting at issue the credibility of witnesses when cases turn on the facts (like in a car wreck or typical medical malpractice case), but isn’t that the point Becker was making—all that matters are facts, and we give them the meaning they are supposed to have?
Wouldn’t Christians say that no number of studies authoritatively showing that these treatments could, as a factual matter, be administered without future physical complications be irrelevant if the treatments attack or destroy that which is fundamental about persons?
In other words, if there is a fundamental law of human nature–for example, that humans are, in principle, designed to be fruitful, and therefore, male and female have an objective value in that regard–then sterilization for the sake of some supposed transition from male to female or vice versa is always harmful.
That would have been the argument and the conclusion under the old Lex Rex climate of opinion, and “evidence” would not have told the judge anything he or she did not already know—sterilizing a child whose reproductive system is healthy and developing properly is per se harmful!
In other words, at one time Christians would have believed and asserted that there was something, in principle, true about being human—a person—and that law of human nature would sit in judgment over the science.
Now Christians seem to concede that science determines what “the law” ought to be. Therefore, as a matter of strict logic, it would seem that this Christian organization would have to concede that transgender treatments for minors should be lawful so long as the “evidence” shows that physicians can, in Becker’s words, “make efficient use of” the science to minimize post-treatment complications.
The Christian’s argument ignores or at least sets aside the possibility that there is anything true—a law—about human nature that informs the meaning of the word “person” under the Fourteenth Amendment. That is terribly sad to me.
The Root of the Christian Problem.
Scripture exhorts Christians to be careful about conforming to the thinking of the world– the “climate of opinion”— that ignores God and His interpretation of all facts, and instead be transformed by the renewing of their minds (Romans 12:2).
When Christians’ legal arguments are framed under the same “climate of opinion” as the evolutionary atheist and can only be understood in terms of that framework, something is wrong.
The Christian policy lawyer must try to address this wrong turning in the legal climate, not resign himself or herself to it. How is that done? At this link is a short brief I wrote in the Tennessee transgender lawsuit that makes a Lex Rex type of argument. You will see the difference.

[1] Becker wrote that the “climate of opinion” refers to the phenomenon that assent to an argument “depends less upon the logic that conveys them than upon the climate of opinion in which they are sustained.” Carl L. Becker, The Heavenly City of the Eighteenth-Century Philosophers (2d ed), 5.
[2] Id. at 23, 17, and 28, respectively.
[3] Id. at 12.

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