‘Holing Out’ for Climate Change

In my youth, our family took our annual summer vacations in Ipperwash, Ontario. My brother and I being students and our parents being teachers, to varying degrees all of us dreaded our impending returns to the classroom. 

A highlight of this annual, ephemeral respite was trekking up the road to Grand Bend. There, you could play in the arcade, get soft-serve ice cream, hippie watch, and—above all—play one of two miniature golf courses. The battles on the well-worn green carpet were sometimes intergenerational; often profanity-laced; but always a fun distraction from the rigidity, conformity, and authority awaiting us youthful disestablishmentarians.

We never expected those halcyon days to continue for us, whether it be for one summer or the rest of our lives. Sooner or later and despite ourselves, we knew we would have to grow up (physically, anyway). We did presume, however, that future generations of kids would find miniature golf a fun distraction from their angst.

Only later in life did I realize how the Left politicizes everything.

According to a recent Reuters story, New York now has a climate change-themed miniature golf course.

Why, you ask?

“Climate change and the environment are such important topics right now,” said the director of Domino Park, Mike Lampariello. “By bringing the environmental issues to the forefront in a fun, playful way like mini-golf, it really sparks the conversation and helps folks understand the scope of the issue.”

When lurched to the forefront, what are some of the “fun, playful way(s)” climate change is depicted at each of the mini-golf course’s 19 holes?

For example, hole 1 shows how litter and debris get washed down storm drains and into waterways, while hole 2 shows what happens when a whale dies and sinks to the bottom of the ocean . . . Hole 3 describes polar bear habitat loss as ice disappears, hole 6 shows how extreme weather could trigger climate refugees, and hole 12 highlights the energy inefficiency of older city buildings.

Yes, for the Left nothing says “fun and playful” like storm drains, climate refugees, and dying whales sinking to the bottom of the ocean.

Yet, if one doesn’t consider this fun and playful and, consequently, demurs from conversing with the climate cultists who have politicized miniature golf, what collective wisdom would one miss? One patron’s comment is particularly striking: “It’s certainly a way to inform people while also letting them have some fun.”

There is the Left in a nutshell: everything is political because everything is about power. “Fun” is subordinate to and subsumed beneath politics and power. Only if one has been “informed”—i.e., indoctrinated and submissive—will the Left let you have fun. But don’t hold your breath. As my friend Gary Eaton observed, “the Left hates fun.” That rocker is dead right.

In fact, contemplate how the Left craves an omnipotent, crony, socialist government that treats adults like children, and children like adults. How callously they have indoctrinated a generation of youth—including their own children—with the apocalyptic claptrap that, absent socialism, the world is going to end in nine years (give or take). In endeavoring to turn them into unthinking political pawns and props, the rulers of the Left are inflicting upon the young a generational trauma on par with what the threat of nuclear war did to them during their own youth. It is almost as if the aging “New Left” Baby Boomers are jealous that, given America’s victory in the Cold War, the threat of atomic annihilation wasn’t around to scare and scar their offspring. 

In deliberately hyping the climate change apocalypse as a means to pimping socialism, did the Left realize it would be subjecting its progeny to a similar psychic trauma? Did it even care? No. Recall how for the Left everything is political because everything is about power. Hence, even if the climate cult realized the harm they were causing their own children, they would consider that necessary collateral damage for the “common good.”

How can sane people engage with climate cult leftists who would do this to their own children—and ours? Experience tells us, “It ain’t easy.” The only thing harder would be trying to build our own “patriotic populist” mini-golf course. On a principled level, we know politics is a part of life (and an unpleasant one at that) but it is not life itself; thus, we don’t politicize and ruin everything—including miniature golf. On the practical level, we would never be able to forge a consensus about which one of the plethora of climate cult leftists gets the distinction of being honored with the “clown’s nose” hole. 

About Thaddeus G. McCotter

The Hon. Thaddeus McCotter is the former chairman of the Republican House Policy Committee, current itinerant guitarist, American Greatness contributor, and Monday co-host of the "John Batchelor Show."

Photo: Getty Images

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