01 April 2010

Transformation Starts Here

I have to laugh every time I receive the "green" newsletter from my province's ministry of education. After, what? 50 years of environmental education, we still pretend that what we've been doing all along is just fine, thank you very much — despite all evidence to the contrary.

So when the newsletter summed up an article written by a school district superintendent by saying "His article suggested that, in the end, it will be lifestyle changes made by individuals that determine whether we achieve a sustainable society," I thought to myself, wow, these ministry of education people just don't get it.

Do you see what's missing? Any sort of critique of the system! There's no mention that our economics will have to change. That our legal system will have to ensure and enshrine economic and legal rights for future generations. That our governments will have to legislate lifestyle "choices" before enough of us will adopt them to safeguard the future. That our present course doesn't just need a tweak. That Big Money might have some role to play here.

We need a revolution — a complete transformation of how people get the energy for all the things they need (and don't need). The end of the Burning Age! No more fuels! But people in very high and influential places keep talking about lifestyle changes, which won't even be viable without a total shift in our economic system.

Please. No more platitudes. No more "other people's lifestyles must change" attitudes.

The day that some bigwhig says, "Let's scrap it all and start fresh!" will be a refreshing — and promising — chance at a future for our children.

Aaaargh, folks, please! Say something revolutionary. Something transformative. Something that shows you actually give a damn about the future — and understand something about the climate change emergency that's threatening us.

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I would appreciate hearing your thoughts or questions on this post or anything else you've read here. What is your take on courage and compassion being an important part of the solution to the climate change emergency?