Monday, March 30, 2009

What is happening ... by Argentum Vulgaris

One of the very first people to follow Reduce Footprints was my "bloggy" friend Argentum Vulgaris of Tomus Arcanum. Many of you know AV ... he is a generous blogger who seems to always have time to reply to comments and promote other blogs. He's a frequent visitor here and typically leaves thought-provoking remarks on the "subject du jour".

If you've never been to Tomus Arcanum (or the nine other blogs AV owns), you're missing out. When you arrive at his blog, the first thing you'll notice are these fun little figures that pop up on the screen. As the page loads, you'll find gadgets of every kind ... all interesting and fun to browse. Finally, you'll see the day's post. Here's where it gets real interesting ... his posts range from the beautiful ... to the funny ... to the shocking ... and sometimes to the disturbing, like when he talked about child brides in Yemen or about the slaughter of whales in Japan. He pulls no punches and tells it like he sees it. He is one of the most honest and direct bloggers you'll ever find. That being said ... there's one other thing that is absolutely true ... you'll always be entertained at his site.

AV has graciously agreed to write for us today. So ... sit back ... relax ... and enjoy:

I have been invited as a guest blogger, my immediate reaction was “great!”, but then the sobering thought, what’s a guest blogger arose.

Well, I soon discovered that a guest blogger is one elected who does a lot of work in a short space of time, considered a labour of love, and I am honoured to be considered worthy of performing such a task.

I have burbled for sometime about environmental issues on my various blogs. Ranted about how we, as a race, don’t care for our backyards and continue not to care ignoring all that is before us, telling us in no uncertain terms that we should be caring; and caring a lot. I am not the greatest environmentalist, rather just a man who has lived 57 years, I do a small bit in my own way at home; one to reduce costs and two, make use of things that I have already used. In the case of one, I am a spendthrift, I hate being conned out of one cent change and demand the letter of the law, then give me five cents; and in the case of two, I can’t see the use of buying tupperware when I have perfectly good margarine containers and jam jars to use; and as for buying dirt to go in my pot plants, I compost and make my own. So it all goes back to number one really, money!

Hence, I read Small Footprints, indeed, I even go back and re-read some parts. It is people like Small Footprints, who will eventually be the saviours of the planet; not individually (SF put your Spider Woman suit away – you’re not a super heroine yet), but you and those like you are all super people. I find some of the issues tackled by SF to be somewhat sobering, things we take for granted, things we throw away (and millions of others throw away too) that make it a problem a million times bigger than if it were just me.

Small footprints has given me the chance to write as a guest blogger, I am honoured that my past ranting has been read by at least one other person apart from myself. Thank you SF, so less ado and more do.

What is happening?

We are literally pissing on the planet and we have to stop!

Our planet, the little mudball we call home, is becoming untenable. We, us humans, have already used, destroyed and polluted most of it, the land, oceans, rivers and air; and we are not satisfied, now (and have been for years) we are even polluting space.

It has been common knowledge for years that we are damaging the place. If we were tennants in a building and treated it this way we would have been evicted years ago. Our God is a very tolerant landlord.

The story starts at the beginning. It is evident from paeleontological sites that early man was not a tidy beast, and we have continued to soil our environment ever since with due disregard for nature.

The major change came with the industrial revolution. The introduction of steam, to produce steam you burnt coal, burning coal produces smoke, a lot of smoke and a lot of waste. Money was the driving force, capitalism advanced shame-facedly, to the point where we are today. No heed was given to the tons of pollutants that we threw into the air at this time.

So with all that untidy history we have become a devil-may-care “throw-away” society. We use, we throw away and all this throwing-away accumulates. Not only accumulates, but accumulates exponentially, remember, with each passing year the Earth’s population increases, each year there are more people to throw stuff away. We are turning the Earth into a giant garbage dump. We are fast running out of space.

It doesn’t matter if we are talking plastic bags, disposable razors or toothbrushes (all of which SF has alluded to in past posts), we are throwing more and more stuff away. We have to seriously STOP and take stock of ourselves. It doesn’t matter if I am talking to you, your family, your community, suburb, city, country, or some giant global conglomerate. We have to STOP; and unless we do, we’ll be living in that garbage dump, and living in it very soon; perhaps within some of your lifetimes.

Everybody can start and contribute, yes, even YOU! We must start at the bottom, the top will always ignore the problem as long as money is involved. Education must start at home and the schools, for it is the new generation that will take the issue to the top. Only then will we begin to see the huge corporations sit up and take notice and we will see governments begin to accept their responsibilities, responsibilities shirked for so long.

Each of us must take time out and sit on the beach of life and look at the world and wonder. We had a beautiful planet, we can have that again, but it won’t happen by magic, it won’t happen by leaving it to the other person. We all need to take a personal responsibility, be we are all the owners of this world.

Would you let your child throw chicken bones on the lounge floor?

Because that’s what we are doing to the planet!

I'd like to give a big THANK YOU to AV for that wonderful post. And ... I'd like to suggest that each of you hop over to his site(s) and browse around.

As always ... I would love to hear from you!