every year, i participate in blog action day.Â i like to tilt at windmills as much as the next grrl, and they always pick topics about which i tend to care.
this year, the topic: climate change.
as a mom and as a somewhat crunchy being, i tend to worry about polar bears and glaciers and all sorts of seemingly unnatural alterations to our present time-space continuum. i often wonder when the day will come when kansas develops coastal waterfront property. i ponder whether my kids — and, G-d-willing, their kids — will inherit a world that continues to turn and continues to exist as we know it. and, being one whose own health is a somewhat fragile topic, i also do imagine the potential health issues that happen when climates go awry.
greater heatwaves hit people, especially those poor folks who don’t have air conditioning or who choose (insert tongue firmly in cheek as that word is said) to live al fresco.Â (well, that’s what my conservative friends tell me. homelessness, apparently, is a life choice. and apparently, climate change is a complete farce. next, they’ll be telling me that i should trust in big business and the free market. but i digress. per usual.) and when it gets very, very hot, all sorts of diseases can become even more of a problem before. for example, mosquitoes would dig climate change, if they had brains bigger than an atom, because it increases their ability to find a date and dinner, which of course can lead to all sorts of happiness for mosquitoes but also a whole world of trouble for us two-legged buffet tables.
and when it’s cold, well, in short, people freeze to death.
i suspect there are potential long-term problems in the offing. agriculture can suffer, which could mean people could go hungry, people might have to move.Â while in the midwest recently, i saw a news segment about a farm that had a bumper crop of pumpkins thanks to the hotter, wetter summer. however, every other crop of theirs — tomatoes, etc — went straight to hell thanks to rot. i’m not especially a fan of pumpkin pie, and i don’t want to face a future where i have to eat any sort of squash in order to maintain my existence.
see, one can only eat so much zucchini before one contemplates something drastic.
now some people think that global warming is a crock of shit.Â but i find that a lot of the commentary on global warming tends to be from people who cherrypick their data. i will freely admit that as someone who doesn’t study the topic 24/7, i try to comprehend the information that bombards me. but i cannot understand people who shut down the discussion. i have plenty of friends who think the whole idea of global warming is bunk, and they pull my tail at all turns (and they will likely pull it in the comments section as well. go for it, kids.) even if you believe global warming is bunk, can you not fathom the idea that perhaps looking toward some better practices could only improve health on the planet? is it so wrong to try to develop and use new technologies to use fewer amounts of non-renewable natural resources and possibly, just possibly, make the air cleaner and easier to breathe? is it wrong to try and work on agricultural solutions that don’t employ so damn many chemicals, some of which are polluting not only the earth but ourselves, thanks to the toxicity of these antibiotics and other supposedly-safe substances on our systems?
i get very tired of the naysayers who don’t want to explore solutions and who only want to piss on the progress parade.
so all right. who knows whether the ice age is coming. who knows whether we’ll all evaporate into vapor. who knows whether animals as we know it will die out.Â we could all be drinking beer with jimi hendrix in heaven tomorrow for all we know. but i believe thatÂ it is our responsibility as people on the planet to encourage anything to help us all live healthier lives, and that includes voting on policies that encourage safer and environmentally-friendly industrial practices. who knows: there may be an economic stimulus in there somewhere that will help us get out of this global financial rut we’re in as well.
it could be a win-win on the health front: our health, and the health of our world.