Thursday, February 14, 2008

All the World's a Stage...

...and all the men and women merely players. But we’ve chosen to ignore the ‘merely’ and act like out of control divas and egomaniacs rather than being part of the ensemble which would allow the entire performance to work smoothly. We think we have the right to have everything as we like it.

We see the world as a backdrop to whatever we want to do, instead of acting with humility as a part of something bigger and more important than ourselves or the moment. Anything can be destroyed if it suits our whim. Considering a piece of land we’ve parceled off from the land surrounding it because we want to “develop” it, we deal with abstractions such as zoning and ownership but the actual life that’s already there is given no thought at all. It has no dollar value in our system and therefore is irrelevant.

Previous cultures showed more respect for the world they lived in. I believe that how we relate to the natural world and other species is the most important factor in determining who we are as individuals and a culture. Since our culture is obviously an unnatural disaster on the subject, it’s up to us as individuals to do the best we can.

Studies show declining numbers of Americans hunt and fish which I’m happy about. Attendance at National Parks is also down which isn’t necessarily a bad thing since most visits amount to a drive-by shooting from the window of a vehicle. The problem is that with the lack of even a minimal connection with and interest in the natural world will come less willingness to preserve any of it. I don’t really think this is anything new; there’s never been any doubt in my mind that if this society staggers on long enough, it will destroy any remaining natural area which might hold any kind of fuel or other resource to keep things going another year, another month. Who’ll get the honor of cutting down the last tree in your area?

Most children grow up with no nearby wild area they could walk or ride their bikes to and explore, assuming their parents would allow it anyway. Everyone’s out to kill and abuse you these days, you know. We hear about it all the time in the news so it must be true. No wild animals to stare at in wonder, no long slow summer evenings with their buddies away from their parents, no clear creeks to wade in or tall trees to climb which somebody doesn’t own, no danger, no growth, no confidence. Plug ‘em in, to the tv, the computer, the video game, the i-everything. Teach them how to make money.

As global warming gains mainstream acceptance as if it were the only problem caused by our way of life, the idea of creating hundreds of years worth of nuclear waste begins to seem acceptable to some. McCain is pro nuclear energy, Clinton and Obama are not willing to mention the word nuclear on the energy and environment pages of their websites. I emailed both asking for their position without revealing my own. I received automated responses which don’t address the issue at all (because my email wasn’t actually read, just mined for a return address) and say that’s all I’ll get. But if I’d like to give them my time or money, that’s fine with them. Polls indicate that I won’t even be giving any of them my vote.

The new global warming specialists don’t concern themselves with overpopulation or consumerism or questioning the basic wasteful habits and lifestyles which make up our culture. They don’t want you to actually consider the consequences of your behavior; they just want to find a new way for everyone to continue behaving the same way. The effects of greenhouse gases are all their world revolves around now. Well, maybe if it’s caused by an automobile or coal. Gotta drive those hybrids, people! Nuclear plants will save us! But they somehow don’t bother to mention that it’s the animal agriculture industry which is the biggest single contributor to the problem. Would you prefer your ground-up cow burned or still dripping, ma’am?

A couple news items:

Following the arrests which began in 2005, the first ELF trial is underway in Tacoma. Others have made deals with the government rather than risk ridiculously long sentences, but Briana Waters maintained her innocence.

Sea Shepherd has taken on more fuel and some new crew and is heading back out to confront and hopefully stop the whalers. The vastly larger and richer Greenpeace has completed their anti-whaling appearance for the year and headed home to send out more requests for donations.


Lisa J. said...

This is a great entry. I feel like just saying "yeah, what he said."

But you're right, these days, it's all about fixing the symptom (global warming for example) but not curing the actual disease (human behavior). And why should we? Aren't we entitled to our way of life?

It's amazing how when you do make changes in your life to live more responsibly or more in harmony with the natural order of things people look down on you, laugh at you, or write you off as a lunatic.

Call me crazy, but I believe in living the change. Oooh, there's that stupid word again...

greentangle said...

Glad you enjoyed it. I kind of feel like I just keep writing the same rant over and over to little purpose, but I suppose I'll still be ranting til I die.

Lisa J. said...

Yeah, I feel that way too sometimes. But I've come to the conclusion that writing these things isn't for the people reading - but for my own therapy. It helps. It really does.