24 October 2011

"Selfish &%$#@!" Theme Week: Monday

If being nice means not speaking my truth or not sharing the truth, then there's no sense being nice anymore. The gloves are off. I cried for a day about the fallout of calling an unnamed denialist a selfish &%$#@! (though everyone I've talked to has expressed their support). My tears are over today and I'm feeling much stronger.
In her 1988 (and recently updated) book of the same name, Susan Jeffers says, "Feel the fear and do it anyway." This was a self-help book (if memory serves, it helped me!), though Dr. Jeffers probably wasn't talking about standing up to climate change bullies and wussies.
But it's a reminder nonetheless that being courageous doesn't mean not feeling scared. It means, as Dr. Jeffers suggests, that one acts despite feeling scared. So call me courageous but I woke up this morning realizing that lashing out is simply one of the tricks in the satchel of climate change denialists — and I'm not going to fall prey to it.
I'm going to keep calling a spade a spade — and if my wannabe nemesis thinks it's all about him, so much the better. I ain't giving up on the kids and their future.
I don't have (too big of) a problem with people who are simply too busy and tired — working hard, raising kids, growing food, etc. — to do the research on climate change. Long ago, I realized that with no kids of my own (but a beloved niece and two wonderful stepsons whose future I care a great deal about), I would have to pull some extra weight. And though it's sad, sad work, I don't mind it or regret it. (Though I do mind and regret that anyone has to do environmental work to begin with. Oh, but that we had an economic system that didn't bulldoze everything in its path!)
The people I really have a problem with are those who read a couple of denialist websites — or columns in the local paper — and decide they know everything they need to know about climate systems, ecology, carbon feedbacks, and the physics and chemistry of greenhouse gases to be able to tell everyone to relax, it's no big deal, it's happened before (yeah, buddy, long before humans existed, and certainly before we "evolved" into an agricultural species dependent on a stable climate). These are people who can't say "food security" and who can't bring themselves to give a flying $#@! about the millions of people in the world already being impacted by the climate change emergency. Grrrrrr.
So, as a sort of spiritual mother to all the children in the world (just as all elders are spiritual parents), I take my responsibility to fight for their future very seriously. Does a mother bear make a polite request when she first feels threatened? No, she knows exactly how she's going to protect her cubs — and it ain't pretty!

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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?