ANN ARBOR, Mich.—As the nation suffers through a summer of record-shattering heat, a University of Michigan report finds that Generation X is lukewarm about climate change—uninformed about the causes and unconcerned about the potential dangers.
"Most Generation Xers are surprisingly disengaged, dismissive or doubtful about whether global climate change is happening and they don't spend much time worrying about it," said Jon D. Miller, author of "The Generation X Report."
The new report, the fourth in a continuing series, compares Gen X attitudes about climate change in 2009 and 2011, and describes the levels of concern Gen Xers have about different aspects of climate change, as well as their sources of information on the subject.
"We found a small but statistically significant decline between 2009 and 2011 in the level of attention and concern Generation X adults expressed about climate change," Miller said. "In 2009, about 22 percent said they followed the issue of climate change very or moderately closely. In 2011, only 16 percent said they did so."
Miller directs the Longitudinal Study of American Youth at the U-M Institute for Social Research. The study, funded by the National Science Foundation since 1986, now includes responses from approximately 4,000 Gen Xers—those born between 1961 and 1981, and now between 32 and 52 years of age.
Only about 5 percent of those surveyed in 2011 were alarmed about climate change, and another 18 percent said they were concerned about it. But 66 percent said they aren't sure that global warming is happening, and about 10 percent said they don't believe global warming is actually happening.
"This is an interesting and unexpected profile," Miller said. "Few issues engage a solid majority of adults in our busy and pluralistic society, but the climate issue appears to attract fewer committed activists—on either side—than I would have expected."
Because climate change is such a complex issue, education and scientific knowledge are important factors in explaining levels of concern, Miller said. Adults with more education are more likely to be alarmed and concerned about climate change, he found. And those who scored 90 or above on a 100-point Index of Civic Scientific Literacy also were significantly more likely to be alarmed or concerned than less knowledgeable adults. Still, 12 percent of those who were highly literate scientifically were either dismissive or doubtful about climate change, Miller found.
A sampling of the comments reveals their knowledgeable Gen X readers are also on to the "Climate Change" bullshit:
Joe Blow (not verified) | July 22, 2012 - 3:22pm
We Gen X'ers don't like Jimmy Swaggart or James Hansen, and the first time that "you can't question the science" became part of the mantra of the warmingists, we recognized the political part of the global warming belief system for what it is, religio-political dogma, rather than actual science. To the extent that scientific truth or religious goodness is tied to a televangelist, it's a shame because the truth may get lost. Just as in Jimmy Swaggart's case, the solution to global warming isn't to use technology and work to overcome the problem, it's to handwring, and give money and power to the evangelists.
Gen X Dumbo (not verified) | July 22, 2012 - 12:39pm
So in summary, if you're dumb, or Republican you don't believe in climate change. Got it. Why are they still spending good money on these studies? If they wanted to know all that they could just hang around Democratic Underground, or Huffington Post for free.
A Dumb Gen X Republican
Harry (not verified) | July 22, 2012 - 12:43pm
Well, this is what happens when you scream "WOLF!" every day for a quarter of a century. People stop paying attention.
Kit Carson (not verified) | July 22, 2012 - 12:57pm
Southpark got it right. man-made global warming = manbearpig, a mythical creature that lives on the outskirts of town.
Man-made global warming does not exist. it is merely a vehicle for achieving, step by step, totalitarian goals:
1. the expansion of government power
2. the concentration of that power in the hands of the elite
3. the diminishment of the sphere of personal freedom.
Look for these three elements in every policy proposal. It is the tell-tale for spotting the Agenda and the people who support it.