Fear/Conservation

I fell under the weight of my own fear, toppled head long into the ocean to cool off, drowned under a frozen lake with no hope for air, crashed into the median like the last stampede of wild horses, manes trailing behind like fire. When I’m afraid, I fall out of love with my confidence. More aligned with a total disconnect, or a deflated balloon. No, that’s depression. When birthday boys and girls suck out all of the helium of my high voiced happiness, I’m a hollowed shell of purpose and darkly brooding out behind the arcade.

There is an enormous paralyzing fear of humanity eradicating all other species off of the planet. At least, no natural animals remain in this scenario, plenty of genetically engineered creatures wander, zombie-like, enslaved, in the wake of the lost. This won’t be a replacement. This fear is huge and hard to comprehend. I hate how conservation efforts have become based solely on local economies and clipboard nagging outside trader joe’s. We tell someone about diminishing numbers of tigers. They tell us about starving children.

Why must we only save humans? Have we no empathy for our cousins?

This self righteous mindset. Us before them. The archaic hierarchies, like Shakespeare’s challenged natural chain of being, with god on top and trees at the bottom. I want to flip this chart. Trees, bugs, animals, then humans (unlike the archaic chain of being with masters and slaves or royalty and ruled)… angels and god belongs at the bottom.

So many good christians do not believe that they need to take care of our world because of the promise of heaven. “If it sucks here it doesn’t matter, because it is infinitely better there, and I have a backstage pass.” I’m not saying that it is bad to dream, but as a belief system that proliferates like insects, it might be wise to think of your little impressionable offspring. What kind of world will they inherit? How could they ever forgive our collective insolence?

Many fears. Many fears. These big ones allow the small ones, such as social discomfort during a job interview, to become trite and trivial, ultimately meaningless. These looming shadows of truth and inevitable consequence makes torn muscle tissue less sore and the anxieties of isolation to dissipate into a fog.

Lastly… I’m taking an introductory Oceanography class at the University of Washington and as we discuss the potential global effects of sea level rise, or ocean acidification, there is a painful constant reminder of humanity’s self interest. To talk of ocean acidification and the possible disappearance of all coral reefs in mass, terrible die-offs, there is the inevitable question… “So what? How would the extinction of these species affect human life?”

A miserable question. Then we talk of socio-economic consequences such as coastal land loss and damages done to the fishing industry. Boo hoo.

Humans can only be coaxed into action if their “favorite kind of sea food” is endangered.

Why can’t we become an endangered species.

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