For Earth Day last year, executive producers Barack and Michelle Obama released an episode of children’s show Ada Twist, Scientist that addresses climate change. Nine-year-old Ada and her friends are concerned about the planet — and not in a 1970s “reduce, reuse, recycle” way. 

Ada is troubled when her older brother, Arthur, announces he’d rather see a new superhero movie than engage in Earth Day festivities. (God forbid that children have hobbies!) Thanks to a magical wish upon a ladybug, she visits Arthur in a dream to take him on an It’s a Wonderful Life-style adventure. This George-Bailey-as-climate-alarmist version is bleak. 

The children visit their favorite park a mere 50 or so years into the future. The park has become a wasteland straight out of Mad Max, with no water, plants, or animals. “Not a lot of people live on Earth now,” we learn, as human-driven pollution has made Earth nearly uninhabitable. “The future is terrible,” Arthur concludes. 

Keep in mind that this show is for preschool-aged viewers and up. But it’s not all doom and gloom, if only children spend every waking moment doing their part to change the climate. “Good thing there’s another version of the future, a better one,” one of Ada’s friends says. 

This version of the future, the one in which humans are still alive on Earth in a few decades, comes about only thanks to solar panels and electric cars, of course. One of Ada’s friends, an oddly feminine boy named Iggy, also tells us that “the community gardens in this future are fierce.” 

Reusable plates and clothes made from recycled fabric are all well and good, but when they’re presented on screen as the things that affect a child’s future happiness, well, parents might as well just turn on CNN for their little ones instead. 

In the end, Arthur skips his movie in order to propagandize with his peers. Thanks to their activist children imbibing this terrifying vision into the inevitable future, Ada and Arthur’s parents decide to buy solar panels for his house. They’re lucky to have that kind of privilege, as solar panel installation for the average house costs a minimum of $15,000. 

This type of children’s content may seem ridiculous, but it’s widespread. And when the children who grew up on a steady diet of climate alarmism grow older, they may need to find ways to assuage their fears. Adopting a realistic vision of the Earth’s future is obviously out of the question, but there are a few other options. 

They can find a “climate cafe” to share their worries with others or dump their alleged trauma on a “climate-aware therapist.” If they become University of California students, they can take a course on “climate anxiety” at various campuses. 

We can jest, but this isn’t theoretical. Fast Company reports that “for adult Gen Z … 82% said they were concerned about climate change overall and 47% said they are ‘very concerned.’” Generation Zers are terrified of their future, and with shows such as Ada Twist, Scientist available on Netflix, we can expect the next generation to fare even worse.

As they say in the show, “Good thing there’s another version of the future, a better one.” In this future, children are encouraged to be good stewards of their environment without listening to the likes of Greta Thunberg and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY). They pick up trash on the sidewalk because they want to and not because they think the Earth will combust if they don’t. 

We can achieve this future, but only if parents stop letting TV shows, schools, and media preach false and terrifying propaganda to their children.