Inspired by my classes this semester and this article (http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2007/04/the-real-roots-of-darfur/305701/), I’d like to share some of my thoughts.
The world is much more connected than I think we realize, and in our hyper-globalized society it is difficult to grasp the ripples of consequence that our decisions make. I think the defining challenge for our generation is, in a sense, much deeper than “solving climate change.” We have advanced so much technologically that we have the ability to create massive change, and in particular, we have influenced entire regions, ecosystems, the global climate, etc. through our exhaustion of resources. If you think about it, that’s…awesome. Absolutely terrible, but it is amazing that humans are capable of such feats.
I believe that it is our greatest challenge now to overcome our mindset of comfortable apathy and embrace the responsibility that we have to the planet, our ancestors, future generations, and ourselves. We must challenge our way of life because “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” does not apply in this context. We must champion a “why not?” mentality because the type of world in which we yearn to live lies on the other side of our comfort zone. Why not get off of coal and invest in renewable energy technologies? Why not support local farmers on both an individual and an institutional level? Why not challenge ourselves to live more sustainably in every aspect of our lives?
When we start to ask ourselves those questions and get to the root of who we are and what we stand for as human beings, we will be better equipped to embrace our innovative intellect, take action to harness our immense power, and channel that influence into creating and enhancing sustainable societies so that we may live in a more stable, just, and wonderful world.