One of the big reasons put forward for not doing anything constructive about Climate Change is the adverse effect it would have on the economy. Loss of businesses, jobs, people crying about the end of Capitalism as we know it, etc, etc. And I guess there’s a valid point there…somewhere.
One of the biggest effects global lockdown has had is in the unimaginable harm done to the worlds economy. Businesses failing, people losing their jobs, children starving, planes gathering dust, food rotting in fields, etc, etc.
Clearly some of the lockdown effects have been a bit of a boon to the climate. Okay, not a long term solution but, for a few brief months, the air was nicer at the very least.
What I don’t understand is how people can get so riled up about a virus killing lots of people but don’t seem to care about the fate of the planet. Even when it applies directly to the lives of their children.
When I say I don’t understand, I have an opinion on why. It’s all about fear.
It’s a fear that was being instilled back around 20,000 years ago when permanent settlements were starting to appear. A time when invaders had to be repelled. A time when ‘leaders’ decided that it would be good for the general population to protect them from the invaders.
In exchange, the ‘leaders’ would make all sorts of promises. They would range from suggesting they would look after the resources to suggesting that they understood the mind of whatever passed for their local invented divinity.
I think many people believe that the world started fearing with the advent of mass media – newspapers, radio, TV – but I think that’s just the modern twist on an old tune. For instance, when was it considered that ‘news’ had to be bad?
This, I’m certain goes back to the beginnings of civilisation. What better way to control a population if not by suggesting that if they didn’t comply, then the floods would destroy their fields. Or If they didn’t kill their best sheep, summer wouldn’t arrive.
In other words, do what I say or things will be bad! Or, if you do these things the bad things will go away!
How on earth did the Mayans convince people to be human sacrifices except through fear? And the Aztecs who sacrificed children? Imagine agreeing to hand over your child to be sacrificed to ‘appease’ some supernatural being. It can only be through some sort of systematic fear induction.
These days, of course, it’s easy. Social media, like a spinning top doused in water, just spreads the fear around the world in a matter of seconds. And the majority of humans just keep it growing.
For example: Write a Tweet condemning the use of masks and include the hashtag #NoMask. Or simply search for #MaskMoaners. There’s plenty of fear on show. And there’s lots of pretty pictures that people believe explain everything nice and simply. In terms of fear spreading, simple is best.
Maybe it’s a genetic coping mechanism; a way to protect one’s genetic material from obliteration. Then all you have to do is join the correct tribe to see your genes successfully make it into the next generation. Though that doesn’t explain the lack of action over Climate Change.
On Friday I saw a man of about 30 in Waitrose. He was wearing a mask, gloves, his arms and legs covered up. He was maintaining a lot of distance between himself and other shoppers and getting visibly distressed when anyone looked like they were about to approach him.
Presumably unaware of the irony, he was wearing a No Fear T-shirt.