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An Inconvienent Truth

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An Inconvenient Truth

This paper is written as a post reflection on the documentary, An Inconvenient Truth. This documentary has won an academy award, and has been scrutinized by political, scientific and academic institutions for its controversial subject. Presented by Al Gore, the previous vice president and candidate for president, its powerful message is magnified through the powerful tactics of politics. The film raised many good points, and contained much interesting data. Below is an overview and analysis of each of the four points which made the most impression on me.

1.) Measurement of Ice Cores

The demonstration of the arctic drilling for ice cores and the ability to measure both the average temperature for the year and the carbon levels by measuring the hydrogen and oxygen isotopes was very interesting. Interesting because of the hard data that it presents; firstly, that carbon emissions are directly correlated to global temperature and secondly, that temperature is dramatically rising above any measurable cycle of global temperatures.

2.) Voyager 1 Photo

The picture of the earth taken by the Voyager nicknames, "The Pale Blue Dot" was humbling to say the least. In my opinion, this picture greatly puts things into perspective. The message that was portrayed by Al Gore during this picture was, "That's all we've got", a message from Carl Sagans book, The Pale Blue Dot.

3.) Breathing earth

Another conceptual image, the diagram of the earth breathing in and out due to the carbon emissions of trees changing through the seasons was effective in pointing out the fragileness of the atmosphere. He also stated that the layer of varnish on a globe was proportional to the size of the atmosphere. It also gave me an appreciation for the earth, and its complexities. It made me think of the earth more as a living organism rather than the indestructible rock it appears to be when standing on it.

4.) Frog in boiling water

As simple analogies are often the best way to bring mutual understandings, I thought the frog in the water was a perfect match. It is very difficult to pay attention to minor raises in the temperature on a micro scale, but a macro scale presents some rather concerning data.

While the movie contained hard data, it was also mixed with tools aimed at affecting people at an emotional level. The scientist in me screams out that these side tangents have nothing to do with global warming or any science at all, while the politician in me realizes that these tangents are effective in changing the internal perspective of the problem. The following four points are ineffective in portraying scientific data, but effective nonetheless.

1.) The elevator

The elevator, or electric lift, in which Al Gore raised up in to show the predicted carbon emissions which was "off the chart" was a bit dramatic. This is a perfect example of how graphs can be twisted into whatever effect you are after.

2.) Story of son

Completely irrevelant to the human impact on the environment, this little side story created an internal frame within the viewer to empathize with Al Gore as many viewers could relate the story to their own kids. It built an emotional response within the viewer and built a relationship with the

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