Letter to Senator Purdue: Please Do Not Support Trump’s Bullying & the Paris Cancelation

Letter to Senator Purdue: Please Do Not Support Trump’s Bullying & the Paris Cancelation

I received a reply to my recent letter to Georgia Senator David Purdue regarding the firing of James Comey from his position as F.B.I. Director.  I was impressed with the specific detail that was included in the letter from Senator Purdue.  It was not a form letter reply.

I followed up with this letter, and urged him to continue to press on with investigating the Trump administration’s connections with the Russian government.

However, my main concern in my reply was the decision of Trump to cancel the US participation in the Paris Climate Agreement.  I described my collaboration with teachers and students across the globe on ecological issues, and urged the Senator to reach out to researchers at Georgia Tech, the University of Georgia, or Georgia State University.  Each of these universities has schools or departments that do research on climate science, and the researchers could be very instrumental in helping Senator Purdue develop the rationale to oppose the Trump decision.

Dear Senator Purdue,

I appreciate your responding to my concerns about the firing of James Comey. I agree with you that who ever is president can remove the head of the FBI. However, in this case, there is evidence that Mr. Trump was “bullying” Comey, and trying to get Comey to go light on the investigation into Russian. There have been reports that Trump asked Comey to lessen or stop investigating Gen. Flynn. If these are true, then its possible that Trump was trying to influence the investigation into Russian meddling with our election, and trying to establish lines of communication with the future Trump administration. A backchannel was possibly being arranged by his son-in-law, Mr. Kushner, from within a Russian facility located in the United States.

Now, Mr. Trump’s decision to drop out or cancel US participation in the Paris Agreement. I hope that you do not support this idea. It’s a bad idea to drop out of this important agreement that will affect not only those of us in the later stages of our lives, but our children and grandchildren. The US joins Syria and Nicaragua as the only nations not signing to the agreement.

I have been in Russia more than 25 times. I was director of a project at Georgia State University, “The Global Thinking Project” (1986 – 2002). We established relationships with not only the highest levels of the Academy of Education, but with researchers, teachers, administrators, middle and high school students, as well as parents. Hundreds of students from schools around Georgia and their administrators and teachers joined our project through our Internet and face-to-face program facilitating cooperative ecological research among students from Russia and the US.

The students, more than 500, would challenge our president in his reasoning, much of which has been debunked by very knowledgable scientists. In fact, many of students in the program, whether from the US, Russia, Spain, the Czech Republic, Australia, Japan, Canada, Brazil, England, Finland or other countries which participated, would be able to offer solid, research-based reasons that the president is wrong, and shows a lack of understanding and empathy for the earth, and those who inhabit it.

The work we did with teachers and students, and their parents had a profound affect on how ecology and its understanding is global in nature. The atmosphere has no boundaries, nor does the sun’s energy that reaches the earth.

I hope that you would consider the scientific data that has been linked together to formulate models and predictions about how warming will cause such harm to the planet’s glaciers and ice sheets, the seasonal weather events leading to increased flooding and fires, and drought conditions rivaling the 1930s. For example, research at the Odum School of Ecology, shows how global warming affecting the altitude or the latitude of species of plants and animals. There is much at stake here, Senator Purdue.

You could reach out to the Odum School of Ecology at the University of Georgia, the School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, Georgia Institute of Technology, or the Geosciences Department, at Georgia State University.

There are research professors at these locations that you could consult to provide you with the results of their research, and how their research relates to Mr. Trump’s decision to cancel our participation in the Paris Climate Agreement.

I spent my adult life as a professor, and director of doing global research to help teachers and students further their understanding how collaboration can help people understand other cultures. Mr. Trump seems to be taking us in the opposite direction.

I urge you to make use of the research that is only a phone call or a link away from you.


Jack Hassard
Emeritus Professor of Science Education
Georgia State University

About Jack Hassard

Jack Hassard is a writer, a former high school teacher, and Professor Emeritus of Science Education, Georgia State University