This Is The End.

July 18, 2011

If we do not collectively raise our voices, force ourselves to be heard over the din, and start forcing progress rather than just talking to each other in comfortable little circles, we are taking millions of years of evolutionary development straight to the end and right over a cliff in record time. As the end of all life and of the human spirit approaches due to our inaction and concern for our home, we are choosing the path of least resistance, of killing ourselves off quietly and quickly, and of ignoring scientific evidence at the behest of conglomerate corporations and politicians hell-bent on destroying our planet for their own profit.

Why are we choosing to go out this way? Is denial easier than action? Are we too accepting in that those of us alive today will probably only have to suffer through minor climate and planetary changes while those not even born yet will be inheriting a home that we willingly allowed to be dismantled in the name of greed and profits for a select few? This is the one and only planet that we as humans inhabit; this is it. This is home. There is nowhere else we can go once this planet is used up. And lately it seems as though we have been tied up, gagged, and paralyzed by invisible thugs desperate to keep us quiet and apathetic so they can continue their reign of terror on our home. Why are we allowing it to continue?

In 2011 alone, while we were sitting at home complacent with being busy tuning into repeats of useless reality TV shows and other garbage TV, we have turned a blind eye to the following:

The USDA’s decision not to regulate genetically modified crops, essentially handing over the rights to our planetary food supply to companies like Monsanto. While most of Europe is banning GMO foods, the USDA has decided not to regulate them at all. Our food supply will soon be completely patented and owned by corporations while becoming potentially dangerous for us to consume.

The modern-day Republican party in Congress have attempted to or succeeded in:

  • Turning back energy-efficiency building standards put in place during the last few years. After all, who wants energy-efficient buildings in a time of declining fossil fuel supplies?
  • Siding with food companies in order to resist efforts to pressure them to stop advertising junk food to children. Kids need and love junk food, don’t you know?
  • Stop a bipartisan law signed by President Bush in 2007 designed to phase out energy-hogging incandescent lightbulbs. The law could save hundreds of millions of greenhouse gasses from being released into the environment while saving consumers $12 billion per year in energy costs — all while reducing demand on our utility companies burning coal and oil.
  • Dismantle our social safety net (Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid) which cares for the elderly, the sick, and our children in our society.
  • Advance legislation that would corrode the Endangered Species Act and the Clean Water Act. You would think they don’t even have to live on this planet with their interest in eliminating clean water altogether.
  • Vote 7 times against ending billions of dollars in subsidies to Big Oil when the companies are setting all-time record profits. Seven times, not just once, they have voted to keep giving away billions of dollars to oil companies while simultaneously voting to cut things like Medicare for the elderly to help balance the budget. Insanity.

Watched the Amazon rainforest lose huge swaths to logging just so we can have things like toilet paper made from “virgin” pulp rather than recycled paper. The rainforest is our planetary lungs; we need it to have any chance of surviving this mess we have created for ourselves over the last 100 years.

The Obama Administration announces an “enormous expansion in coal mining” which will increase pollution by more than half of what we already emit each year.

In the first six months of the year, there are 80 new laws on the books limiting a woman’s reproductive rights to decide what is best for her own body and/or family. In 2011 can you believe we are still even having a discussion as to whether or not women have these rights?

The EPA give a green light and seal of approval to hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, which is a means of natural gas extraction from deep gas wells in the earth. For each frack, 1-8 million gallons of fresh water and 80-300 tons of undisclosed toxic chemicals are used. Fracking leads to the destruction of underground aquifers where we get all of our fresh water from, and if you have any doubt as to how it will affect you, watch the film Gasland. You can check out the trailer here. Communities near fracking rigs complain of methane and benzene contaminated tap water that homeowners can light on fire. It has also led to significant increases of radioactive material and carcinogens in major rivers and watersheds. Are you being fracked with? This is happening across the entire country, probably in your backyard.

SC Johnson, the brand well-known around the world for bringing us such “green”products as Raid bug killer, Glade air freshener, Ziploc plastic bags, and Drano, gets picked as one of the 10 greenest brands in America; and no one blinks an eye.

Americans continue to buy bottled tap water by the caseload while we watch as the worst drought in 60 years gripped Africa, affecting over 10 million fellow human beings.

Watched as another (largely unregulated) oil industry company pipeline ruptured, spilling over 42,000 gallons of oil into the Yellowstone River near Billings, Montana. ExxonMobil and investigators still aren’t sure of the environmental cost of the spill, but just like what happened in the Gulf with BP, I am sure ExxonMobil won’t be held too responsible. After all, we don’t want to hurt the feelings of the oil companies, do we?

Continue to buy products from Nike, Adidas, and Puma, companies which are using suppliers pouring toxic chemicals into China’s rivers.

Seen several reports that 1 in 10 species could face extinction by the year 2100. That’s only 89 years from now — 1 in 10 species. Think about it. This year it’s bees, birds, and rhinos; what are next year’s losses going to be? 200 species PER DAY go extinct.

Watch marketers continually try to turn Earth Day into a Black Friday full of shopping “for the environment” — and oxymoron if I have ever heard one.

Millions continue to spray the weedkiller Roundup on those pesky green weeds, even though scientists have now shown that Monsanto’s product causes birth defects. Does having a few weeds sound all that important in comparison?

Are we lemmings blindly following each other off the cliff or are we rational human beings who can decide to clean up their act?

When will you speak up and be heard? If you don’t do it now, when do you plan on taking action? After it’s too late or while you still may have a chance to make a difference? There will not be a tomorrow if we all don’t take action today. Don’t leave it up to anyone else to do it for you; do it for yourself and your family and your future. This is your one and only planet; take it back from the special interests, the politicians, the corporate polluters, and the nonprofit groups like The Nature Conservancy which pretend to care about the planet.

Yes, we all still need to do the little things, like change over to energy efficient lightbulbs and buy more organic food. But if we all don’t speak up, raise our voices, write letters, stand in protests, vote for progressive candidates rather than ones wanting to bring back the 1800’s, and unite as a single human race in order to preserve our future, what will we be left with in just a few short years? And who will we have to blame? Only ourselves, that’s who.

So stop being passive, stop thinking that someone else will fix it, and stop thinking there is nothing you can do to change the way things are. All that will change the current path we are on is that if you, your friends, and your family start standing up for what kind of planet you all want to call home. If we remain acquiescent and submissive, whatever comes will be due to our own inaction. Don’t let that be your legacy to future inhabitants of our one and only home. Soon you’ll be gone; what will you leave behind?

Do something.

Filed in: Responsible • Tags: , ,

About the Author:

After a varied past of being a test driver for automotive television programs, a Hollywood studio lackey, and an online media sales director, David is now the publisher and editor of The Good Human. In his spare time he rides motorcycles, drinks good beer, and builds stuff in the garage. You can follow him on Twitter at @thegoodhuman or G+ at Google
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Comments (10)

  1. You asked the 8 billion human question, “Why are we allowing it to continue?”

    The answer is simple – Since acquisition (pillaging) is the core value of the culture we’ve grown-up with – so the majority know no other way of living and will cling to this core value until it destroys them. There is no other logical outcome; the ‘taker’ culture will inevitably destroy itself as a result of constantly working to acquire more More MORE. Eventually it will consume itself unless… people change and evolve.

    Daniel Quinn does an excellent job of explaining the ‘taker’ culture in his books, Ishmael, Story of B, etc – for those that want to get a better idea of what I’m talking about.

    I’m glad you posted this today David. It’s time for all of us to stop being so subtle. We (humanity) needs to wake up and change – or we will face a very dark time indeed.

  2. Jennifer says:

    Thank you for this wake up call. I wasn’t aware of all of the things you mentioned, but — YIKES. It is definitely time to step it up, move out of our individual action mindset, and agitate for change on a bigger level. I don’t know how optimistic I feel about having the entire human species put aside differences and cooperate, even for something so obviously important, but nothing else is going to derail this train wreck.

  3. Brad deGraf says:

    YES! The reality is: SUSTAINABILITY IS IMPOSSIBLE as long as the rich and the corporations are sucking all the value out of every system, forcing the other 99% to cut down trees and dynamite coral reefs just to survive.

    The single biggest thing we can do right now is MOVETOAMEND.org. It is possible to amend the constitution thru a citizens’ movement and take away corporate personhood.

    Without that, everything else is spitting into the wind.

  4. Spectacularly said!

  5. James says:

    Very nicely done. I think these are some of the defining issues of our times and we owe it to future generations to take action.

  6. Susan K says:

    I am firmly of the opinion that our planet is at peril and therefore our very existence is in question. And still we all seem to be bickering over the detail. As David Suzuki, author and scientist, has so aptly said:

    “We”™re in a giant car heading towards a brick wall and everyone”™s arguing over where they”™re going to sit.”

    We need to take responsibility both individually and collectively and find the strength within ourselves to change our system. We need to take responsibility for how our culture and the way we live has shaped our world and eaten away at its resources.

    Why is it beyond our capabilities to club together and change our behaviour? We see some problems as beyond solutions. But they”™re not.

    Susan

  7. Malcom Reynolds says:

    I think the bigger problem is that the human race is growing exponentially.

    Look at basic population dynamics. Animals will reproduce and population will grow exponentially until resource limited. Too many animals; not enough food; animals die off until an equilibrium is reached.

    Humans aren’t resource limited. We have two options: We can use our higher intellect to limit ourselves, or we can grow until we use up all of our resources until we self-limit and start dying off. This is essentially the point this article is trying to make, just cast in a different light.

    The most destructive thing you can do is to have a child. Even one; they will reproduce and continue exponential population growth. The best solution I’ve seen is to join the VHEMT. http://www.vhemt.org/

  8. Damian says:

    Your words are inspiring and point out some things that are very wrong in America at the moment, all of which I’ve seen stated before on the internet so many times. We know the facts; that’s not the problem. Aren’t these problems dire enough to call for action? Surely the internet can be used not just to provide the information, but also to organise the meet ups and rallies that will lead to a positive change.

    Those in charge can close a browser window, but they can’t ignore the voice of the people when they gather outside their window.

  9. Jenna says:

    You are SO right! We do need to speak up more. We also need to be VERY careful how we spend every single coin. Big business follows the money. Government follows big business. If big business knew that people were switching fast and hard to a more sustainable and environmentally safe way of living, they get on board quickly to keep the profits rolling in. Then governments would start making regulations to support that position. So yes, speak out! And remember, your real vote takes place at the cash register.

  10. Mike says:

    Well here we grow our own plants, wash our clothes by hand, use the excess water for the plants. We capture all the rain water to feed the tomatoes. We built an outdoor kitchen so as not to heat the inside and therefore don’t need ac. Its nice. An induction cooker and a combi microwave/oven.

    Its not political; its just a plan in action. It makes little change but its worth doing.