Leading global warming skeptic Anthony Watts, known for his popular blog Watts Up With That?, has recently been accused of being responsible for the deaths of eight people as well as the injuries of another 41. Global warming skeptics have been accused of vague things things like "dooming the planet" before, but this may be the may be the first time specific deaths have been laid at a single skeptic's feet before.
The accuser is a blogger who goes by the name Sou, at the blog HotWhopper. Given she's accused Watts of being responsible for eight deaths, and one is entitled to confront their accuser, I feel it is fair to point out her real name is Miriam O'Brien. This is what she said:
At one point recently, Anthony branched out into national security and went all alarmist. He warned his readers to watch out for terrorist attacks on the Independence Day weekend, so quite a few of them unholstered their guns. This was the result. (Only a couple of readers said his article was crap.)
As it happens, the article was BS. The source Watts relied on was full of it. The post at Watts Up With That? needlessly frightened people, involved no fact-checking or meaningful investigation, and ultimately was no better than a chain-letter you might see on Facebook or in your e-mail's spam folder. That merits criticism. It merits mockery.
However, according to O'Brien, it merits far more. According to O'Brien, it wasn't some harmless piece of drivel meriting scorn - it got people killed. According to O'Brien, "the result" of the article was:
Eight dead, dozens injured in Independence Day weekend shootings in Chicago
Miriam O'Brien is clearly accusing Watts Up With That? readers of having caused shootings over the Independence Day weekend, because of an article Anthony Watts posted, resulting in eight people dying and 41 people being injured.
Neither O'Brien nor Watts was immediately available for comment, but one reader pointed out it has been reported:
The warm weather and the fact that it was a holiday weekend was believed to partly explain the spike in gun crime.
So it is possible O'Brien would further blame Watts for these deaths as he has not encouraged people to take steps to reduce humans' impact on the planet's temperature.