I am grumpy and going to rant, deal with it! If you are in the mood for something uplifting or fun, this is not the essay for you!
I don’t like humans much. Sure individuals like YOU are fine and generally fairly inoffensive, but as a species they have little to recommend them. Some decent art, though the best of it is still just a pale imitation of nature. Those few of us who actually think and communicate well are often inspiring and almost worth making the effort to get out of bed for, though thanks to the net you don’t even have to do that. So there is another good thing on the ledger, Al Gore creating the internet. Plus…. there is some great take out food out there, particularly in the “Mexican” genre. But other than that what are they good for? Oh yeah, sex is good too. So that is a few things that save us from being irredeemably worthless.
But as organisms who are allegedly capable of thought, we have a loooooooong way to go. And a short time to get there. As I look around at my fellow humans, it often takes all of my willpower not to despair or just start yelling at them!
Sure, we can blame the pace of development due to the exploding population for the lack of an intelligent approach to living on a planet with limited resources. But that is more an excuse than exculpatory. We have the information we need and have had it for decades. Despite all of the efforts by the PTB to quash it, we now have the technologies that we need either in hand or within easy reach. And we certainly have the evidence we need that the conditions to support human life on our little oasis of a planet are deteriorating at an alarming rate. So alarming, in fact, that those humans who have been ‘blessed’ with ignorance and the nearly unlimited human capacity for denial have succeeded (once again) in halting or slowing the efforts of those who have the capacity of thought necessary to save the planet for their children and grandchildren because they are fearful, superstitious, gullible and unwilling to face the fact that the lifestyle they value above all else is unsustainable and in fact a form of slow suicide for our entire species.
Adaptability is what wins the evolutionary race, and the losers don’t get a sliver medal, they get dead. So…..a certain amount of despair is certainly warranted as we look around at our fellow humans here at the beginning of the 21st….and possibly last, century of human syphilization. What are the prospects for human adaptation to the information that we have only a few decades left to fairly radically change our way of life…or perish as an organized world society. What are the indications that we are treating this information as more than another “issue” on the teevee, rather than as the stark life or death reality that is staring at us from the abyss? Not much. Certainly not in America, certainly not in an America ruled by Neandro-cons, fundies and rapaciously short sighted corporate entities that have the power to change the culture and technology of human life to something sustainable but instead…..don’t, because it won’t look good on the next quarters all important spread sheet.
It just doesn’t speak well of humans in general.
On the plus side, there are a relative handful of folks who are working their asses off to change things, little by little, step by step, which is all the denial and entropy that humans are so bloody good at will allow. And as the evidence mounts and mounts and mounts that this is not some distant catastrophe that we can whistle past, but something that we need to acknowledge, accept, and deal with in our hearts and minds we do see some changes in human behavior. Though of course, while you are changing your light bulbs and inflating your tires, they are still blowing up mountains to get at the coal in them and there are 30 or so coal fired power plants in planning or nearly online, just in the US, let alone China and the rest of the world, oil use is still rising, not falling, and the conventional energy companies have morphed (due to cooperation with a certain Imperial administration) into what amounts to the most powerful entities on the planet. Entities that are more than willing to use force, political corruption and well researched and effective as hell propaganda to keep the status quo so that they can continue to loot the planet for and fill their greedy pockets with….soon to be useless…cash.
There are a small group of men on this planet who are stopping the change and progress that it is imperative for the human race to undertake in our approach to nearly every facet of human life, who are not just slowing or stopping technological changes, but are informing and retarding the MENTAL and emotional approach that we need to embrace at this point in human history, if human history as we know it is to continue to exist. An alarmist statement to be sure, but as the evidence mounts for the imminence of catastrophic Climate Crisis, an accurate one.
These men are aided and abetted by what are in evolutionary terms, the bottom feeders as far as the adaptive process is concerned, those who deny reality, which right now consists of a huge number of Americans. Americans who unless their willful ignorance and denial are overcome are, in effect, sentencing every inhabitant of the planet to at least a dystopian future, and quite possibly billions of humans to an early death. And all we can do is try to educate them and somehow jar them into reality, before some disastrous, massive, life consuming events do. Educate them until they too, start to resist the plans and propaganda of the forces that are destroying our oceans and atmosphere at an ever increasing rate and begin to demand from ourselves and our leaders a truly sustainable culture, society and future. And then make the sacrifices in ‘lifestyle’ that will be needed to achieve that future.
Yeah, I don’t like humans much….but I don’t want to see billions of them die either.