“The Climate Crisis: Seeking Help from Health Professionals”
College Writing 2, Dr. Tommy Pfannkoch
I was interested in this piece since the issues of climate change, healthcare, and political agendas are of importance to each of us in similar or different ways. Climate change is a dire topic and it was interesting to see it in a new light. It never occurred to me to connect healthcare professionals to climate change, but after reading this article I was able to see just how much of an impact healthcare professionals can make on the effects of climate change. In this day and age, it can become difficult to trust politicians with complex issues like climate change. Trusted professionals like doctors can help citizens learn more about the issue in a way that instills change. Therefore, this article and writing this piece showed me how critical healthcare professionals are in addressing the issue of climate change.
Excerpt from “The Climate Crisis: Seeking Help from Health Professionals”
“By diving deeper into the rhetorical situation, one is better able to recognize Krieger’s goal in writing this piece. She strives to show health professionals that climate change is a medical issue and not only a political and environmental one. She wants health professionals to see that how climate change is currently being addressed does not suffice. In order to help persuade her audience into believing this, she provides a variety of examples to explain why the current approach to addressing climate change is faulty. For example, she states, “we in health professions… must also pay attention and take action regarding another body of evidence little discussed in public health or medical literature… via changes to the ‘rules of the game” (Krieger 5). Krieger wants her audience to see that the ‘rules of the game’ matter because that plays a big role in who our elected politicians are. Politicians have the power to choose what issues to focus on, including climate change and public health.”
The Climate Crisis: Seeking Help from Health Professionals
by Joanna Chodorowicz
Oftentimes, scholarly articles may seem difficult to approach. They may be filled with difficult vocabulary, focus on complex subjects, and can seem impossible to understand. Karen Rosenberg offers some guidance on how to decipher scholarly articles and how to truly be able to comprehend them in her article, “Reading Games.” Rosenberg’s philosophy to better understand scholarly articles requires the reader to consider and understand the rhetorical situation. She mentions, “rhetorical reading practices ask us to think deliberately about the role and relationship between the writer, reader and text” (Rosenberg 212). Some of these practices include joining the conversation and being actively present in the exigence of the scholarly article, considering the audience, and studying “the architecture of the article” (Rosenberg 215). This refers to splitting up the article into sections such as reading the introduction, abstract, and conclusion separately in order to better understand the purpose and main points of the article instead of tackling the article as a whole. Using Rosenberg’s advice allows the common reader to be better equipped to understand the purpose, context, and audience of the text which in turn fosters better comprehension of the article and goal it is trying to achieve.
When reading the article, “Climate Crisis, healthy equity, and democratic governance: the need to act together,” I considered Rosenberg’s advice to try and determine the audience of the piece and her purpose in writing to them. While reading the article, I concluded that this article is specifically targeted for health professionals, health organizations and institutions. Krieger is speaking directly towards health professionals and strives to persuade them that climate change is not only an issue that affects political and environmental issues. In the text she mentions, “I delineate some steps that US public health and medical institutions, agencies and organizations could take” (Krieger 7). Here, she addresses both the audience and presents the exigence of climate change. She wants health professionals to realize their untapped potential on how their input can better address the issue of climate change and its effect on public health. Krieger also directly addresses the audience when she mentions, “we in the health professions” (5). Here she is using first person and wants her audience to join the conversation. She wants to include her audience in the issue and by doing so, she is helping her audience realize the urgency of climate change. This phrase shows that she wants her peers to stand with her in combating the issue of climate change.
By diving deeper into the rhetorical situation, one is better able to recognize Krieger’s goal in writing this piece. She strives to show health professionals that climate change is a medical issue and not only a political and environmental one. She wants health professionals to see that how climate change is currently being addressed does not suffice. In order to help persuade her audience into believing this, she provides a variety of examples to explain why the current approach to addressing climate change is faulty. For example, she states, “we in health professions… must also pay attention and take action regarding another body of evidence little discussed in public health or medical literature… via changes to the ‘rules of the game” (Krieger 5). Krieger wants her audience to see that the ‘rules of the game’ matter because that plays a big role in who our elected politicians are. Politicians have the power to choose what issues to focus on, including climate change and public health. She talks about the current politicians. She states, “an extremely wealthy and political minority has been spending lavishly to change the rules of the game to undermine the democratic minority, thereby making it increasingly difficult to protect people’s health” (Krieger 5). Krieger talks about political gerrymandering, voter suppression, and undermining to convince health professionals that these current tactics are suppressing a state of democracy where voters can choose politicians who care about the issue of climate change. Since this is occurring, Krieger wants health professionals to realize they need to step up to the plate and “develop an informed and cohesive approach to addressing the conjoined political and biophysical threats to people’s health” (Krieger 5). Krieger succeeds in persuading her audience to believe her points because she causes her audience to realize what is faulty with the current system. By providing data to support her claims to show the current negative impacts on climate change for public health, she is able to convince her audience that their platform needs to be used to make a positive impact to ensure better safety for the health of the public.
Furthermore, she continues to prove the exigence of the article by providing her audience with more examples of how the current political system does not prioritize climate change and how that has a negative effect on people’s health. She uses Koch industries to prove to her audience the negative agendas many wealthy elites have. She mentions that the Koch brothers believe that the sole purpose of the government is to “protect private property and do little else” (Krieger 6). By doing so, the audience is able to see that some really do not have the interest of public health on their agenda and makes them realize that if nothing is done about that problem, climate change will not be given attention to and public health will be hindered.
Krieger uses the rhetorical situation to help communicate to her audience. By doing so, as readers, we are better equipped to understand the exigence and audience of the article. Krieger speaks directly to health professionals in this article to help them realize the urgent need for them to intervene on the issue of climate change. To persuasively convince her audience to consider her ideas, she uses many examples to explain the current issues with how climate change is being addressed. By providing information on negative political agendas, health professionals can realize that their input is necessary for protecting public health from the effects of climate change. Krieger also provides steps for health professionals to take in order to help solve this issue. This allows health professionals to realize that climate change should be an issue that is relevant to them. She provides this information with the hopes of persuading her audience to take a stand in overpowering a corrupt government that is not making public health a priority. By providing these tips and examples, Krieger achieved her goal of proving to her audience that climate change has a negative effect on public health and that health professionals need to take on more responsibility to help protect the public from the negative health effects that can occur because of climate change.