Look Beyond The Label

By Karen Rooney

You don’t have to be an environmentalist to understand that the earth around us is changing. You can see it, feel it and live it everyday. You see it in the news – floods, droughts and storms. You feel in the weather…. above zero temperatures in what used to be a cold winter. You live it every day when the prices of your food go up subtlety over time as the staples needed to produce it are becoming scarcer.

You don’t have to be an anarchist to grasp the fact that the capitalist system we live in is broken; to know that our resources are limited and that infinite growth is impossible. Your worth doesn’t need to be measured by your possessions and the worth of the earth doesn’t need to be measured as just another commodity.

You don’t have to be a feminist to recognize that women are severely affected by climate change. Loss of agricultural land robs them of the livelihoods that help them to provide for their families.

You don’t have to be a youth to understand the urgency of the situation. If we cannot unite together, there will be no future for “future generations” to inherit.

You don’t have to be an activist to know that it’s time to mix up our tactics and shake up the system. Doing the right things and saying what’s appropriate have gotten us nowhere. If anything, we have merely been taught how to exist within a framework that guarantees our inability to be effective.

You don’t have to be a delegate to COP17 to see the sway that corporate lobbyists and polluting industries hold over government positions. The active obstruction of the process to achieve a fair, ambitious and legally binding agreement by a few wealthy, powerful and co-opted countries is shameful.

You don’t have to be a radical to have a critical analysis of the situation; to propose a different way of doing things and to scratch beneath the surface.

You don’t have to be a label.

All you need to be is someone who gives a shit.

One Response to “Look Beyond The Label”
  1. GreenHearted says:

    Giving a shit = compassion. Compassion will be what saves us in the end (if indeed anything saves us in the end) because no one can argue with compassion. At some point, the climate change shit will have hit everyone’s fan, and suddenly (like getting a boom in the face helps people learn to sail) everyone will *get* that we are one species, in one atmosphere, dependent on one biosphere.

    While I’m here, I’d like to disagree with you on geoengineering being a false solution. That’s like saying that doing a tracheotomy on a dying child is a false solution to anaphylactic shock when the parents were too stupid or too greedy to give their allergic kid the emergency epipen!

    Geoengineering isn’t a false solution, it’s a last resort. And we’d better be ready to use the last resort!

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