As the Jesuits almost said: “Give a child until he is seven and I will show you the fully indocrinated, yogurt-weaving, polar-bear hugging eco loon.”
Such, at any rate, has been the message at one of the panel discussions at this year’s luvvie-fest of impeccably correct thinking, the Hay Literary Festival, where a group of “CliFi” authors have been singing the praises of brainwashing the impressionable young through the medium of kiddie-friendly climate pornography.
Climate activists are targeting children through a new range of ‘cli-fi’ – climate fiction – novels which seek to highlight the dangers of global warming.
David Thorpe, author of the book Stormteller, said that children were more open minded and claimed that writers could ‘infect’ their minds with ‘seriously subversive viral ideas’.
He was speaking at the Hay Festival alongside ‘cli-fi’ authors George Marshall and Saci Lloyd.
“I like writing for children because their minds are still forming,” said Mr Thorpe whose novel is set in a coastal Wales ravaged by climate change and rising sea levels.
“They are asking all sorts of questions about how the world is working. Their minds haven’t been tainted by ideological bias, they are still open minded about it.
“You can try to be seriously subversive and try to infect their minds with these viral ideas that they can explore on their own to make it exciting. When I was that age I loved having my mind boggled.”
Saci Lloyd, author of the children’s book, The Carbon Diaries, said it was important to write engaging stories for children while keeping climate change as an underlying theme, so it was not obvious that it was a central topic.
Interesting use of the word “subversive” there in the novel sense of “achingly conventional”. I don’t know how many classes you’ve visited, David Thorpe – quite a few, I would imagine, given my understanding of how assiduously children’s authors court schools in order to have their jottings whacked willy-nilly onto parents’ bills – but what you might have noticed had you been paying any attention is that “global warming” is taught these days as assiduously as the Sermon on the Mount, the parables and the Ten Commandments used to be in the past.
Also on the panel was a chap called George Marshall, author of a book called Don’t Even Think About It: Why our Brains Are Wired to Ignore Climate Change.
“We need to get climate change out of the rational side of our brain and into the emotional part because that is where attitudes are formed on the basis of our values,” he said.
So if the facts don’t suit you, make stuff up. Yeah, I get it.