In a startling incident over the weekend, a prominent Twitter user was reported and subsequently had their tweet deleted for hate speech. The tweet, which can be seen below, was in reference to a new study about anticipatory cash transfers being a neglected climate change solution.
“If we really want to fight climate change, why don’t we just get rid of all the poor people?”
The tweet has been universally condemned as hate speech, with many users arguing that the tweet implies that poverty is somehow linked to climate change and that the solution is to eliminate the poor.
The study in question, published in Nature Climate Change, looks at the potential of anticipatory cash transfers to help people in poverty deal with extreme weather events. The study found that providing cash to people in poverty days before extreme weather events could help them to better prepare for the disasters.
This tweet, and the sentiment behind it, implies that poverty is somehow linked to climate change and that the solution is to eliminate the poor. This is patently false. In reality, poverty has nothing to do with climate change, and the best way to combat it is through the implementation of solutions such as anticipatory cash transfers.
It is clear that this tweet was intended to spread hate and misinformation about climate change. It is unacceptable to spread such hateful messages and it is a reminder that we must be vigilant in fighting climate change misinformation.
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