Essay: Toulmin Argument About the Environment

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Toulmin Argument

An Argument for Christian Environmental Responsibility

Introduction and Claim

Although Christians are tasked with stewardship of God's creation, many believe that it is not their responsibility to care for the environment nor show concern over environmental problems. Many reasons exist for this belief. Some Christians believe that Christ's return will change the world as it is anyway, so caring for the environment is simply a waste of time. Others may be concerned with the attitudes of many environmentalists, attitudes that place creation above the creator. Still others may simply assume that anything "of this earth" should not be prominent in the lives of Christians. These people often assume that Christians should task themselves with the things of heaven, paying little attention to any of the world's concerns. Perhaps this group believes that if non-Christians see Christians paying attention to the things of this earth, the non-Christians will assume that Christians really have nothing to look forward to. This same argument is often used for Christians who stay out of political processes and other topics of community concern. Even though these arguments are prevalent among Christians, however, biblical mandate and responsibility command Christians to care for the environment.

Grounds

Now, more than ever, environmental problems are plaguing the earth. Most of these are problems that could have serious potential consequences if they are not dealt with soon. One of the most often popularized problems is that of global warming. Global warming, also called the greenhouse affect, occurs when gasses are trapped near the surface of the earth, much as heat is trapped in a greenhouse. The fact that global warming is occurring at such an increased rate of speed concerns many scientists. These scientists have developed a variety of models that study the effects of global warming over years. Because global warming increases temperatures, it is dangerous to polar icecaps. The ultimate effect of the greenhouse effect on these icecaps is melting, which would raise sea levels and eventually drown some islands and countries, forcing their inhabitants to relocate and causing congestion in an already overpopulated world ("Global Warming"). Other issues that our environment faces today include air pollution, radiation, acid rain, and toxic chemicals seeping into water and dirt. Although global warming may be the primary focus of environmentalists today, these problems are similarly severe. For instance, air pollution is a serious environmental problem with consequences for humans and animals. One of the most notorious consequences of air pollution is acidity, most often known as acid rain. Air pollution causes chemicals to build up in precipitation, which then makes water polluted. This can be harmful to fish and aquatic plants. Humans who eat the fish and aquatic plants are similarly harmed. Furthermore, buildings can become corroded because of the large amounts of acid in the water. Air pollution also leads to the depletion of the ozone layer, a protective screen against harmful UV rays. Without the ozone layer, humans are more susceptible to skin cancers, and certain types of crops can be harmed ("What is Air Pollution"). Thus, the numbers of environmental problems currently affecting today's earth are too many to count. Though many exist, global warming and air pollution are two of the most serious. Both of these problems have serious long-term and short-term consequences for animal, plant, and human life.

Warrant

Because these environmental problems can be caused and solved by humans, Christians have a responsibility to act in accordance with scripture and take care of God's creation, in addition to making the world a better place for their fellow humans to… [END OF PREVIEW]

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