Should We Humans Feel Guilty
Recently, one of my ardent readers said, “Humans should not feel guilty about living on Earth.…” He defended humanity’s overpopulation running roughshod over the planet and the oceans. He defended that humans own the right to reproduce themselves forever without end into eternity. He argued that we can add another 20, 30 and 40 billion people to the planet without consequences. He felt that our causing the extinction of over 100 species daily cannot be our concern. He lacks any moral compunction or sense of responsibility toward our fellow life-forms. He denied that human carbon footprint creates climate destabilization. He advocates for unlimited population growth. In other words: he lacks the intellectual horsepower to understand his own dilemma. Another way to put it: dumb as a box of doorknobs.
A hundred years ago, Alfred Whitehead in his “Adventures of Ideas”, made a statement that spelled out a logical path for the advancement of the human race: "The foundation of all understanding...is that no static maintenance of perfection is possible. This axiom is rooted in the nature of life. Advance or decay are the only choices offered humanity. The pure conservative is fighting against the essence of the universe."
Whitehead said that we must change our thinking to fit new realities. We must take Galileo’s new understandings that the Earth no longer enjoys the universe revolving around it, but in fact, our planet remains a speck in the black void of the universe. This planet remains finite with a finite carrying capacity. Humans, to be sure, need to get a clue that they are not God’s gift to the world. In fact, Shim Shimmel, the renowned artist said, “With creatures like human beings, even the stars aren’t safe.”
With more intelligent Americans surveyed recently, they were asked the question: Do Americans think stabilizing population will help protect the environment? Fifty-four percent believe stabilization will.
My friend Steve Kurtz said, “Nothing on Earth happens in a vacuum. It’s a closed system that begins to buckle under the sheer weight of human demands. Scientists are increasingly linking population growth and overconsumption to our environmental challenges.”
With my six continents of bicycle travel, I unequivocally understand and have seen firsthand that human overpopulation accelerates as the single greatest and most dangerous issue facing humanity and all life on this planet in the 21st century.
In just the past few months’ scientists have found in America:
• Florida’s aquifer, the water supply for 19 million people, is experiencing saltwater intrusion because of over-pumping.
• The United States will lose 36 million acres of forest to urban sprawl by 2050.
• Sixty-six species of coral should be classified as endangered because population and consumption of resources are a driving factor in the threats they face.
• The Gunnison sage grouse merits endangered-species protection in part because the human population has doubled in its habitat and will double again in the next 20 years.
• Florida panthers experienced the second year in a row of record-breaking road kills deaths due to increased traffic and development in panther habitat.
“Upwards of two hundred species.. .mostly of the large, slow-breeding variety.. are becoming extinct here every day because more and more of the earth's carrying capacity is systematically being converted into human carrying capacity. These species are being burnt out, starved out, and squeezed out of existence.. .thanks to technologies that most people, I'm afraid, think of as technologies of peace. I hope it will not be too long before the technologies that support our population explosion begin to be perceived as no less hazardous to the future of life on this planet than the endless production of radioactive wastes.” Daniel Quinn
What’s going on with our oceans defies and frightens even the “hardest” mentality: 100 million sharks killed annually for the past 20 years. Species extinction rates blowing off the charts. Acidification of the oceans so many life forms will go extinct including our reefs. Plastic devastation like the Great Pacific Garbage Patch killing millions of marine and avian creatures annually. Over 20,000 square mile dead zones at the mouths of rivers around the world running raw sewage laden with chemicals 24/7. The list multiplies as we multiply.
Americans get it and our leaders need to get it and we all need to understand that we cannot stand around with our noses stuck to a TV set. We need to participate in our future and the future of our children.
Join me with Dave Chaffin, host of the Morning Zone at 650 AM, www.KGAB.com , Cheyenne, Wyoming every Monday 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m., as we discuss my latest commentaries on immigration-environment. You may stream the show on your computer. You may call in at: 1-888-503-6500.
Frosty Wooldridge has bicycled across six continents - from the Arctic to the South Pole - as well as eight times across the USA, coast to coast and border to border. In 2005, he bicycled from the Arctic Circle, Norway to Athens, Greece. In 2012, he bicycled coast to coast across America. He presents “The Coming Population Crisis facing America: what to do about it.” www.frostywooldridge.com . His latest book is: How to Live a Life of Adventure: The Art of Exploring the World by Frosty Wooldridge, copies at 1 888 280 7715/ Motivational program: How to Live a Life of Adventure: The Art of Exploring the World by Frosty Wooldridge, click: www.HowToLiveALifeOfAdventure.com
Live well, laugh often, celebrate daily and enjoy the ride,
6 Continent world bicycle traveler
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