There's a good roundup in Salon today about 28 disparate heroes who are battling global warming (oh, suck it up and watch the ad first) and while just mentioning anything about the environment makes even the best of us yawn, it seems pretty clear that we are messing with the future of humanity - and the future is coming way faster than anyone thought.
Those of us in our 30s are still young, but we still got three very fun decades in. We had a good run, perhaps, and if you don't plan on having kids, it's easy to not give half a shit. But I just went and looked at my sleeping Lucy, and I'm sorry to be a hackneyed cliché hound, but can you imagine dealing with the next 80+ years of global warming? Can you imagine what she might need to deal with? IT'S HARROWING.
Americans don't care about global warming for four reasons:
1) we are lulled into complacency by the enormity of our country
2) the news is so bad as to be incomprehensible
2) the only thing we believe in that we can't see... is Jesus who died on the cross for man's sins, apparently
3) we don't give a long-term shit about anyone else in the world.
It's so goddamn shameful how irresponsible the Bush administration has been to environmental - and worldly - concerns, choosing to give the finger to science again and again. Actually, we're really giving the finger to 96% of the world's population, because that's how much of the world is NOT US.
If things don't change - like, say, if another Republican with oil interests is elected in 2008 - it augurs very poorly for us, because the rest of the world is not going to sit around and let us get away with being climate-ruining assholes for the rest of the century. They are going to take matters into their own hands.
When their lakes dry up, the sea water topples their dikes, and their crops begin to fail, they will come after us. For the last four years it seems like religious extremism was going to be big problem, but I think we have a better shot at being fucked by something worse: environmental terrorism.
Some country will attack us, using whatever weapons they have, to shut down our economy and render our fleet of gas-guzzlers useless by the side of the road. Perhaps they'll destroy some oil platforms, radiate an entire chemical plant city, poison Detroit. And it won't be in the name of Allah, it will be in the name of an Asian country with half a billion people on the brink of starvation.
Even writing this makes feel like a wacko. But don't tell me that none of you feel like we have entered an era of... for lack of a better term, Unprecedentedness. If it weren't close to a novel by Jonathan Safran Foer, I would pitch a book called "Everything is Unprecedented."
The news is terrible, and we've known it for a long time. I remember taking classes on global warming at UNC in 1989, and the best we could do was ban CFCs in our deodorant spray. My brother Steve believes it will take something unthinkable like a nuclear detonation on American soil to wake us up. Is there ANYTHING anyone can do to slap us out of our somnambulist stupor without that kind of horror?
WHY IS THIS FUCKING MONKEY IN CHARGE AT THIS CRUCIAL POINT IN HISTORY??? You'd think your God would have taken better care of us.
Posted by Ian Williams at November 3, 2005 11:18 PM