We must change our ways or join the dinosaurs, with the added shame of having known what we were doing – and doing it anyway. We are the meteor, and we are about to flame out.
Global warming, pollution of all kinds, fisheries collapse, agricultural decline, ocean acidification – on our current path, our future is non-existent. Realistic and conservative predictions are for a major die-back of humans within 40-90 years; there is simply no way the Earth can sustain the current human population if we continue to live the way we do.
I was a climate sceptic until I did the research on global warming. As I dug deeper, I discarded the opinions of newspaper columnists and bloggers and others lacking scientific credibility. I realised that scientists working in many different fields were warning of impending disaster – and many had been doing so for some time.
They weren’t crying doom to get grants, but because that’s where the evidence was pointing. Scientists have been warning us for decades that pumping carbon dioxide into the atmosphere would cause global heating, for example, but back then they thought we would have decades, even centuries, to react. However, things have been changing much more rapidly than the scientists, conservative by training, expected. The scientific community is now verging on panic as we have not only ignored their warnings, but massively increased the rate at which we are destroying our life support system.
Apparently, Polluting has Consequences
Scientists and activists have warned of various types of pollution, from CFCs destroying the ozone layer, to pesticides and fertilizers creating hundreds of ocean dead zones, to chemicals causing cancers and birth defects. Some fisheries have collapsed and many more are expected to do so within 40 years. Coral reefs are experiencing a massive die-back, and may be completely gone before long. The list seems endless, yet still we plough forward, somehow believing we are exempt from the consequences of our actions.
We are now locked in a battle between those with the courage and honesty to acknowledge our predicament – and those who arrogantly believe themselves to be above the laws of nature. The latest example is the COVID pandemic – many Western leaders have declared COVID ‘over,’ even as hospitals are overwhelmed and businesses shut due to sick employees. If we meek wish to inherit the Earth, we must act before the arrogant consume it all.
Our only choice is a rapid change to living in harmony with nature. Every other living being on the planet lives within the rules set down by nature, or by life, one could say. Only humans have attempted to position ourselves as gods, exempt from natural laws, and that is not sustainable. We are now living in an age of consequences.
We must mobilize as we did for World War II, when the entire economy was changed in months from manufacturing consumer goods to war materials. We must move immediately to a sustainable economy, a restorative economy that undoes some of the damage we have done.
The Problem is Political
If this seems impossible, know this: the problems are all political. There are solutions to cut carbon and methane emissions, to green transport and clean housing, to grow food sustainably, and so on. The solutions are:
- technical (e.g. electric vehicles), or
- involve a change in how some live (e.g. take the train rather than a car to work), or
- a bit of both (e.g. electric trains).
Check out Drawdown for a plan to end our polluting ways and regenerate the Earth’s ability to support human life. A Good War is all about Canada mobilizing to fight climate change on a WWII scale, but what Canada did in response to WWII and could do again now in response to climate change – any country could do much of it.
The forces arrayed against us are those of power and money, of status and privilege, and they have a very strong vested interest in the status quo. They will not yield readily, regardless of evidence and common sense: They are corrupted by greed and arrogance. Many are outright sociopaths.
“Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable.”
John F. Kennedy, 1962
Many democratic governments are moving to criminalize peaceful protest. The problem is that these governments mainly serve giant corporations and the rich – the US is essentially an oligarchy. They cannot allow protest, peaceful or not, to interfere with their patron’s businesses. Most Western democracies with First Past the Post electoral systems are, for all intents and purposes, run by cronies of capitalists.
I hope it doesn’t come to violence, but it seems obvious that it will unless we change course…and even then we’re going to need a lot of luck. We face multiple serious challenges and there’s no guarantee we will make it even if we give it our all starting immediately. If we do not change our ways, however, there is certainty.
Consider this a battle cry; not all of us are going quietly. German youths set luxury cars on fire, the President of the Maldives has vowed his people will not die quietly, and I created this site to be a rallying point for those of us who will stand against the sociopathy of arrogance and greed.