After reflecting on my We Better Wake Up post, I realize I made it sound like I watched Gore’s movie and then suddenly started running up and down the streets in my underwear yelling the sky is falling. That’s not quite the case (I’d wear a coat too).
In fairness, I want to share a list of scientists who aren’t quite sure greenhouse gasses are causing the global warming we are experiencing in the last century. You can find it here, courtesy of auntie MP. It struck me that all but a couple of the scientists on this list would agree that greenhouse gases either do or may have an impact on global warming. So if that’s the case, isn’t it worth rethinking our practices as a human people?
This is a much deeper question for me than global warming. It’s about reconnecting in a nearly forgotten way with nature, with the land that we call home. Warning: wacko idealist ahead :-). We as an American people have, since our very beginning, practiced an owner-object relationship with the Earth. Instead of learning from her, we usually think we know better and charge ahead with our own ideas about what might be best for Mother Nature. Profit becomes more important than doing something sustainably.
A friend told me today that it is a tradition for Lakota people to talk about and think about seven generations in the future, and how what I do today will have an effect on the next 7 generations. We (as in white American culture) have forgotten how to even think more than one generation ahead. In the span of a couple hundred years, our whole region has gone from a place where thousands of people lived sustainably for thousands of years, to a place where we’ve turned the prairie upside down, lost half our topsoil, destroyed whole ecosystems, amplified floods and droughts, eliminated species and poisoned our water and soil.
We can’t conquer the land and think we’re smarter. The Earth has always given us warnings, and she will fight back. We have created a consumption culture that cannot be sustained. We’ve forgotten that we are only stewards of this Earth–it is not ours. Our time on it is gift, and is very temporary.
Nature is much smarter than us. She has been learning for millions of years. We’ve only been here for a blink of the eye.