The Hedgehog and the Fox – A Nelson Mandela Perspective on Global Warming
Professor George Philander, Princeton University
There is an ongoing debate in several different arenas about global warming and climate change, even though there exists a general consensus among the scientific community that human activity has contributed significantly to this change. Professor Philander points out that global warming is polarizing because it involves both the world of science where the laws of nature are absolute and apply without exception and the world of human affairs where compassion is a virtue and compromise a requisite. The challenge is to find a balance between our responsibilities to those living in abject poverty today and our obligation to future generations. Mandela’s perspective, knowing when to be a fox and when to be a hedgehog, suggests a project that promotes responsible stewardship of planet Earth: After a presentation of the currently available data on global warming, he will invite the participation of the audience in creating awareness that the present is a precarious moment in Earth’s history, a time for caution and circumspection.