SoCS: Ecocide

It’s the first Stream of Consciousness Saturday and continuing on with Just Jot it January.

Your prompt for #JusJoJan and Stream of Consciousness Saturday is: “eco.” Find a word that starts with “eco” or has “eco” in it, and base your post on that word. Have fun!

I chose the word ‘ecocide’. It means the destruction of the natural environment (by human agency). With all the news about global warming- or climate change- lately, of course I’ve been thinking of it.

It’s always been in the back of my mind ever since I first became aware of it when I was just a little kid. Maybe 3rd-4th grade? Back then, the official scientific consensus was that we’d all be frozen into icebergs by now. They’ve changed their minds to the ‘global warming’ scenario now.

There has always been some debate between the optimists- who think human ingenuity will be able to solve all the problems brought upon ourselves by our insistence on breeding to the point of total destruction of the planet, and pessimists (like me) who think we will not.

It’s 40+ years later and I am still listening to the same basic arguments. The only difference is: now it’s global warming instead of global cooling. Or climate change to cover all the bases.

And, just to say it now… I am not a ‘climate change denier’. Of course the climate changes . It always has, it always will. I’m even willing to say that mankind most probably has had something to do with it. My problem with the ongoing debates at the moment has to do with the proposed solutions to the problems.

Of course, the ecocide has only progressed over those 40+ years. More pollution, more clear cutting, more soil erosion, more pollution in the air helping cause climate change, more ocean acidification, more habitat destruction for farms and houses, loss of biodiversity, and on and on and on.

Our leaders want to convince all of us to give up our high standard of living (which we get through the use of things like oil, chemicals, etc.), and bring about a ‘carbon neutral’ economy. Or even to reduce our use of energy so that we can ‘save the planet’.

I’m not totally sure what to say about that. I think there’s a much better solution than what ‘our leaders’ have come up with.

Of course I don’t want to see the destruction of planet Earth (even if I would love to see us out there exploring space and making ourselves a backup plan). I would love to see each and every person on this planet have the ability to live a good life!

Not one mired in poverty. Not one where they have to struggle every single day just to scrape up the bare necessities to exist, but a good life. One where they can work at what they enjoy, where they have plenty to eat and drink, one where they have time to enjoy the fruits of their labors.

I also want to see a planet where every other living thing has the ability to live without the threat of humanity’s greed destroying the habitat needed for survival. I want to see a planet with plenty of free space for nature. Room for all the plants, animals and humans to enjoy the natural world.

Not just for the fact that it’s healthy and good for people to be out in nature, not just for the possibility of all the things we’ve not yet discovered in the natural world that will help us live better, not just for the fact that the Earth is a cohesive, interconnected organism and we have no idea what we’re screwing up beyond repair with our human activities, but also because it’s morally, spiritually and even economically wrong to destroy so much of the world around us.

Why? Because we are so greedy.

I am NOT using that word in the way most people would. I see nothing wrong with people trying to live the best lives they possibly can. My issue is with the fact that so many people choose to have so many children (or don’t even consider not having them). Birth control? WTF? It’s like their only purpose in life is to breed. 😦

I’m scolded for being a ‘selfish American’. One who was lucky enough to be born in the USA and so afforded a higher standard of living than most people around the world. I’m very lucky I don’t have to work my ass off for $1-2/day like so many do. But, where you’re born is mostly a matter of luck. I know I personally had nothing to do with where I was born!

What I ask people who ‘dis’ me for my ‘selfishness’ is: “and how many children do you have?” (or plan to have)?

Consider. Even if you only have one child, that child may chose to have only one, or they may have dozens. And each of those children may chose to have one, or dozens more. You have absolutely NO control over anyone but yourself in this matter.

And so, by my choosing to never have any children, I have already done more than my share in ‘saving the world’. I will spend the rest of my life being ‘selfish’ and enjoying the things I’ve earned the right to enjoy.

Don’t tell me not to use my air conditioner, or my car, or anything else! No, you don’t have a right to say diddly-squat about it until YOU stop having kids!

My solution to the problem of ‘climate change’ (and all the other problems) is to simply stop having so many kids!

Not forcibly, like China, but voluntarily. Spend some of the resources going on about global warming on convincing women around the world on the benefits of only having 1-2 children. Start promoting THAT as a way to save the planet instead of trying to convince everyone to give up on their hopes to live a decent life!

The optimists insist we can put up everyone on Earth in Alaska! That may be true, I don’t know. I do know that I don’t want to live in a world where 7 billion + people are living in Alaska! I do know that I don’t want to live in a world where we continue to commit ecocide simply so that we can fill it up with more and more people.

I can’t even understand WHY so many people think that’s the way to go. It saddens me, that we have so much beauty in this world and we are throwing it away. Why? Because we need to fill up the world with another few billion people? Why?

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How Much Roundup Are You Eating?

Too much! The US really ought to ban this stuff, it’s terrible! Read more from ‘The Awakening’ blog below…

Worker spraying strawberry fields with pesticide PHOTOGRAPH BY PAUL GREBLIUNAS/GETTY By Leah Zerbe June 19, 2015 Pesky weeds popping up in your yard? Here’s what to not reach for—Roundup. While the active ingredient in the popular weed killer, glyphosate, has been marketed as safe and even “biodegradable,” the science is pouring in, and the results […]

via How Much Roundup Are You Eating? And six more disgusting facts about this popular weed killer. — 2012 The Awakening

World Oceans Day

World Oceans Day is coming up on Monday (June 8). This years theme is ‘healthy oceans, healthy planet’. It really is just common sense. The oceans cover over 70% of the earth. We all ultimately rely on the ocean for our own health and well being. It’s important to take care of it, if only for our own good. Monday will be a day to remember all the reasons we should respect and care for the oceans, it’s a day to celebrate and get involved too.

The oceans are a major source of food for people (and animals): fish, shellfish, seaweed, plankton, krill, etc. They also help to regulate the climate and keep some of the Northern areas warm in the winter and Southern places cooler in the summer (N hemisphere). The oceans are also extremely important for connecting people around the world. In the USA, 90% of our trade is by sea.

A lot of people make their living directly from the sea like I do. I’ve worked on the water from the time I was a kid. Fishing, recreation (cruising), and transporting cargo from one place to another (a ship is much more efficient than any other form of transport). Now, I work in the offshore oil fields, exploring for and extracting resources from the sea bottom.

If you live near the ocean, like I do, you already know how important it is for your ‘soul’, your mental health, your attitude. I can sit by the sea, listen and watch the waves roll in and it immediately calms me. I like to swim, snorkel, sail, SCUBA dive, surf (not very well), fish, and any other activity that gets me out on the water. 😉

I hope you’ll take a few minutes to think about how you benefit from it and what life would be like without a healthy ocean. Check out a few of the links. Get involved in some of the events if you can. If you can’t get out to any of the events on Monday, remember it doesn’t have to stop on Monday!

There are plenty of things you can do every day to help make things better. Even simple things like talking to people about World Oceans Day, disposing of your trash properly, using as little plastic as possible, not letting balloons fly away loose, etc. It all helps. 🙂 PS- none of the pictures in this post are mine, I got them all of the internet.

Bizarre Barreleye Fish

Sorry I haven’t been keeping up with the ‘editorial calendar’ I made up for the Blogging 201 challenge. I hope you haven’t been too disappointed. 😉

Here’s something I found online recently with the “Creature Feature”/”Wild Wednesday” in mind.

This has got to be one of the weirdest fish I’ve ever seen. It’s head is transparent! ONLY it’s head is transparent!

There are lots of other sea creatures that are transparent all over, or mostly clear. It makes them less obvious to predators.

Supposedly, the transparent domed head helps this fish steal food from certain types of stinging ‘siphonophores‘ (colonial organisms- one common type is a Portuguese man-o-war).

It’s eyes are INSIDE that dome. What looks like it’s eyes are really it’s nostrils (or close enough). Weird. 🙂

These barreleye fish (or spook fish) live in deep water. This video is one of the first to ‘catch’ one alive. They’ve been caught before, but these types of deep sea creatures are not in the best shape when they come up to the surface. The changes in pressure are usually enough to seriously damage them (if not kill them outright).

I just think its amazing how much we still don’t know about what’s in the water all around us. There are so many beautiful and fascinating creatures out there and we haven’t even scratched the surface.

I think it’s a shame that through our actions we are doing such damage to pretty much everything else on the planet. I would hate to see that continue til it’s too late and we won’t even know all the things we lost.

I do think the other things that share the planet with us have a ‘right’ to be here too. Yes, I do think everything on this planet is here for a reason. Everything is connected. We are all part of the whole.

I think humans are completely unbalancing the entire world. Most of the problems we have to deal with now are the predictable end result of the fact that there are over 7 BILLION people on the planet (and we are STILL increasing that number daily)!

The crowding is not good for us or for anything else that has to share the planet with us. We are NOT the be-all and end-all of everything. Too bad most of us think we are. 😦

Slaughterhouse Said to Process “Horrifying” Number of Whale Sharks Annually

Slaughterhouse Said to Process “Horrifying” Number of Whale Sharks Annually.

 

Well, here it is again already: Wild Wednesday (Creature Feature). I’ve been so busy, I haven’t really had time to keep up with things here as much as I’d like to. I’m working nights (1800-0600) and for some reason that schedule just really keeps me messed up. I’m always SO tired. 😦

I saw this article and thought it would make a good one to post here. First of all because I’ve always really liked these giant fish. They’re so big, but they never bother anybody. They grow up to about 40-45 feet long and yet they only eat plankton. They’re one of the longest lived sharks, they can live up to 100 years!

I’ve always wanted to do a trip where I could swim, snorkel or SCUBA with them. I think that would be something really special. I see the pictures of people doing it and it just looks fantastic. They are just awesome! 🙂

I hate to think of people just catching these fish and slaughtering them willy-nilly, even though they are endangered. Most sharks and rays are now on the endangered species list. 😦

I know a lot of people probably think: ‘good riddance’, but sharks and rays are actually beautiful creatures and are very well adapted to their environments. There are over 470 species of sharks and rays.

They live in every ocean, from the surface to the depths. They’ve been around for over 420 million years! There are some very interesting stories about sharks (I loved Jaws). They have interesting lives.

 

They have interesting history with people around the world. The Hawaiians were just one people who worshiped a shark god. People do seem fascinated with sharks.

Maybe it’s because they can (and sometimes do) eat us? 😉

They’re one of the very few animals that we ever feel even slightly threatened by anymore. Although there were only 4.3 on average unprovoked fatalities from shark attacks worldwide (2001-2006).

Hopefully that fact will quell some fear and we won’t allow the indiscriminate killing to continue. It’s estimated that over 100 million sharks are killed EVERY YEAR!

Sharks serve a purpose in this world. Just like every other living thing on this planet. They deserve to have a place here just as much as we do and we really ought to stop killing off every other thing around us just because we can.

One of these days those kinds of actions WILL come back to bite us.

Maybe with shark teeth. 😉