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Nicholas Gier ngier006 at gmail.com
Tue Jul 7 18:40:26 PDT 2015

Letter: Carbon confession
July 6, 2015

I just downloaded the pope’s environmental encyclical Laudato Si. I am
already having nightmares about my future confessions:
Bless me father for I have sinned. In the past month I have used 1,500
kilowatt-hours of electricity, 25 therms of natural gas and 60 gallons of
gasoline. I am sorry for these emissions and the carbon footprints of my
past life.
The priest then replies: My son, I understand it is difficult to be holy
and green. Seldom can we change completely overnight. I urge you to take
small steps. For your penance turn up your summer thermostat to 90 degrees
and your winter thermostat down to 60 degrees. Carpool once a week.
Our Holy Father will be visiting the United States this year. Please help
him offset his own carbon foot print and assuage your guilt by donating $10
to the Vatican Bank’s carbon credit fund. But please, never refer to it as
a carbon indulgence. Go in peace and emit no more.


A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they
shall never sit in.

-Greek proverb

“Enlightenment is man’s emergence from his self-imposed immaturity.
Immaturity is the inability to use one’s understanding without guidance
from another. This immaturity is self- imposed when its cause lies not in
lack of understanding, but in lack of resolve and courage to use it without
guidance from another. Sapere Aude! ‘Have courage to use your own
understand-ing!—that is the motto of enlightenment.

--Immanuel Kant
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