“I’m not a scientist” is a perfectly acceptable response to climate change questions, as long as you’re willing to acknowledge everything else that you are not.

Republicans who have found the denial of climate change too ridiculous and inconvenient to continue to perpetuate have turned to a new strategy. In response to questions about climate change, they have adopted a single sentence sound byte that they are repeating with disturbing regularity.

“I’m not a scientist.”

“I can’t comment on climate change because I’m not a scientist.”

“I’m not qualified to make determinations about climate change because I’m not a scientist.”


This remark might seem genuine and even thoughtful and measured if it wasn’t being repeated with the frequency of a car alarm in New York City. Republicans everywhere have clearly been given this phrase as a talking point and are using it with great abandon, as Stephen Colbert points out in this segment.

Despite the sudden and overwhelming use of this sound byte as a means of doing nothing about climate change, I’m willing to accept these Republican’s admission of ignorance as long as they are willing to also admit that they are also not:

  • economists
  • military strategists
  • healthcare policy professionals
  • gynecologists
  • teachers
  • Biblical scholars

If these white men (because that is primarily who they are) are unwilling to accept the findings of the vast majority of scientists who assert that climate change is both real and man made because they are not scientists themselves, then they must also renounce themselves from decisions involving the economy, monetary policy, the military, the Affordable Care Act, Medicare, Medicaid, abortion, contraception, education, and any policy enacted in accordance or alignment with Biblical principles.

This is what Democrats need to be saying every time they hear a Republican say, “I’m not a scientist.”

“Yes, but you’re not an economist, either. And yet you seem to be acting like you know something about the economy.”

“Sure, but you’re not an expert on teaching or being a woman or fighting a war, either. So shut the hell up with it comes to those things, too.”

“If you can’t act on the advice of the majority of scientists because you yourself are not a scientist, then you can’t quote the Bible either when defending bans on same sex marriage or just your own bigotry. You probably haven’t even read the thing cover to cover, and even if you have, that doesn’t make you a Biblical scholar.”

I have yet to hear a Democrat respond aggressively or appropriately to this ridiculous sound byte. Perhaps Democrats have and I have yet to hear it, but I couldn’t find an adequate response through a Google search.

Stupidity cannot go unchallenged or it becomes doctrine.

And while people like Stephen Colbert do a fine job of bringing this issue to light and pointing out the lunacy and virus-like spread of these four words, talk show hosts are not enough. Elected leaders must stand up against this ridiculous blanket of words that climate change deniers and ignorers are suddenly wrapping themselves in.