America – You Are In The Bad Books

I just watched the BBC documentary, presented by Sir David Attenborough, about the threat of extinction to so much of our wildlife (trailer below). I was so saddened at the reports about the way pangolins are treated, even though their scales are made of the same substance as our fingernails.

One of the points that was interesting to me was when it mentioned that even more of a problem than increasing population (I think the guy remarked that in his lifetime, the global population has grown from 3 billion in 1960’s and now he is expecting it to be 9 billion within his life) is consumption.

Globe, Earth Day, Earth, Planet, World

They explained that it is not the countries with large populations (India and China etc) who are consuming the most. First of all they said that on average a person in the UK consumes four times as much as a person in India. The UK is definitely in the bad books. But then they added, on average a person in the USA consumes seven times as much as a person in India. America – that really puts you in the bad books. It is people in western lands who are driving this monstrous appetite for more, more, more.

The demand for food of all conceivable flavours and varieties, the demand for all sorts of commodities and “stuff”…it is placing an overwhelming burden on our planet and destroying our wildlife and it’s habitats. The demand for beef means that wildlife habitat is destroyed to accommodate vast numbers of cattle. Currently, the population of our planet is roughly 60% domestic and farmed animals, 36% humans and only 4% wildlife. We have changed the balance of population on the planet, mostly due to the appetite for meat. The demand for fish is having a detrimental effect on oceans. The demand for a perfect shaped pumpkin or other vegetables means colossal amounts of waste as veggies that don’t look the way consumers want them are rejected and left to rot.

I think one of the saddest things in the documentary was the two white rhinos left on this planet. They are a mother and daughter. I cried thinking about what that meant. A species hunted for their horns – people wanting them often for medicinal purposes. Many creatures are hunted as trophies or in the name of fashion.

But the main point made was that this year has put something of a pause on the crazy consumer driven economic world. It is a golden opportunity to change so many of our habits in order to help our wonderful planet recover. It has a remarkable ability to recover, but it needs our help.

The spotlight was pointed on the political governments to make changes. But we already know that political governments will have their “to-do” list and for some reason, the care of our home planet does not seem high up that list. To me, it’s more evidence showing humans were not designed to rule themselves.

If It Makes You Happy, Why Are You So Sad?

Jim Adams, aka Newepicauthor, the creator of A Unique Title For Me, is hosting SONG-LYRIC-SUNDAY and this week he has chosen the theme: CONTRASTS

photography of human faceI had to check with Jim what he had in mind for this theme…and he explained:

“…it should be lyrics that include stuff like black and white, loud vs. silent, wet vs. dry, or hot vs. cold, thus your lyrics or title should contain things that contrast with each other…”

This could be a very interesting theme and I look forward to seeing the songs chosen by other bloggers today 🙂

So, I found a number of songs that I thought might fit the bill, but this one was the first that came to mind – HAPPY/SAD as in Sheryl Crow’s “If It Makes You Happy“.

I’ve been long, a long way from here
Put on a poncho, played for mosquitos,
And drank til I was thirsty again
We went searching through thrift store jungles
Found Geronimo’s rifle, Marilyn’s shampoo
And Benny Goodman’s corset and pen

Well, o.k. I made this up
I promised you I’d never give up

If it makes you happy
It can’t be that bad
If it makes you happy
Then why the hell are you so sad

You get down, real low down
You listen to Coltrane, derail your own train
Well who hasn’t been there before?
I come round, around the hard way
Bring you comics in bed, scrape the mold off the bread
And serve you french toast again

Well, o.k. I still get stoned
I’m not the kind of girl you’d take home

We’ve been far, far away from here
Put on a poncho, played for mosquitos
And everywhere in between
Well, o.k. we get along
So what if right now everything’s wrong?

Written By: Sheryl Crow and Jeff Trott