Last summer the esteemed naturalist E. O. Wilson told the Huffington Post that he fears a nuclear conflagration as a clear and present danger to the planet. A similar-sounding fear has been shared by Donald Trump. “The global warming we should be worried about is the global warming caused by NUCLEAR WEAPONS in the hands of crazy or incompetent leaders!” read a Trump tweet, fired off in 2014 and echoed during his candidacy for president.
The two men made these parallel observations for different reasons. Trump wished to downplay the risks of global warming. Wilson, while acknowledging the longer-term peril of climate change, worried that “some stupid mistake” by a nuclear-armed nation could bring on catastrophe in coming years. On an equal footing, he feared a Trump presidency as an immediate menace but at the time believed the mogul could never be elected.