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(15,477 posts)
17. I was recently visiting with people in my age group
Sun Jul 9, 2023, 04:55 PM
Jul 2023

(70s+) I think 2 or 3 groups of people over the last month. Conversation often turns to death, with several people hating the idea of their mortality and what if the point of living, when in the end we all die. I usually say something like we are the only species that know we have an expiration date, and so we can pack as many experiences, relationships, anything really that makes our existence meaningful.

I think it is a damn shame that even if we are the only species that is aware of death, when it comes to the environment, we are no better than any other species on the planet, and since we know we are causing harm, causing disaster, we do nothing to change course. The entire planet's future in in our hands, and we are doing the least possible to head off the calamity that is just down the road. There are many caring individuals laying awake at night wondering what else they can do to save the planet. There are just as many individials that don't give a damn, and do nothing to reduce the throttle. And even if companies and countries say they will do things, they don't. They just keep saying they'll do things, like words will be actions.

I flew to Maine last week, invited to join my family on their vacation. When I see mile after mile of forests, and rivers flowing, and all of the other positive signs of life and living, it is easy to think that the planet will survive the horrific abuse we keep piling on. The Earth might survive, but how about the passengers? There have been regional disasters in the past. Campi Flegei probably wiped out the last of the Neanderthals. Thera destroyed the Aegean culture. Droughts in South America destroyed the Mayan civilization. There was a mini ice age that brought famine and plague to Europe. Humans have been here before and we handled it as humans do: with opportunistic survival of the fittest. And even with proof from our own history, mindlessly we go on, and damn the torpedoes. I didn't think I'd live to see the crash of the environment, but when I read articles like this, I dread what is ahead, for all of us.

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