21 October 2005

don't they know, it's the end of the world?

this is what global warming looks like.
Is anyone else wondering about the apocalyptic feats of nature over the last year? The staggering number of people who have died and been affected must surely make people wonder whether they are truly "acts of God."

Perhaps the lack of coverage and dialogue in the popular press regarding the environment perpetuates this mystification. Are people really informed as to the connection between global warming and these natural disasters?? I know that I know less than I should. The Bush administration has simply paid lip service to the crisis that we're in, and the American people are feebly asked to try to reduce consumption. That's BS to try to portray the dire situation our environment is in as solely the responsibility of consumers. Although every little bit counts, and American consumers certainly have a human, civic responsibility to the Earth and its inhabitants, perhaps our leaders should take a look at how sustainable development can be impelemented on a more systemic, institutional level. Getting the corporate behemoth to take accountability for their contributions to the environment would be a more productive step in putting off the day of Armageddon.

I also wonder what the role of privilege plays in our environmental predicament...the human race seems to have the ultimate privilege of going about our daily lives without concern for how our actions affect the environment. However, like other situations of exploitation, all people will suffer in the end.

2 comments:

yukster said...

Hi Steph,

I agree with you that there is less emphasis on how global warming is related to all the natural disasters occuring around the world. Having my entire family across the sea, hearing about their constant experience with earthquakes definitely scares me and brings me closer that consequences we as humans will eventually pay for not properly taking care of the planet we live on.

In terms of privilege, I think of the stratification within the human race, due to racial and social class differences, where Whites and rich even escape the natural disasters quicker than oppressed groups. I feel that this *lack* of experience often leads to actions without paying more attention to consequences of actions. For example (I don't know why I cannot think of better example), in one of those reality shows, Paris Hilton went to a farm to help out, and to have an experience as a farmer. She was asked to milk the cows, and then rinse the milk bottles with a hose. She actually hose the milk bottles from the top, diluting the fresh milk... Of course, some people may argue that this is not an example of being privileged, but rather stupidity... However, my point is that she did not think all the extra work, effort, and money her single action cost these farmers that she was supposedly helping.

I would love to hear other people's thoughts about how we can slow the process of global warming.

cc said...

The US seems to exist for big business. Oil companies reign supreme over any global issue, such as use of natural resources with apparent disregard for the indisputable fact that natural resources will be depleted someday. The capitalist structure dictates that the US is willing to spearhead global destruction, all in the name of money. Three cheers for greed, oil, and the burning of oil.