Stupidity and ignorance

There are, apparently completely mythical, stories told about lemmings all following each other blindly over the edge of a cliff and that ostriches stick their heads in the sand when they are frightened, believing that they are now hidden from view. Less mythical, it seems to me, is that this behaviour can be widely observed in a variety of ever more novel ways, being displayed by my fellow human beings.

 In this time of plenty - at least for those who have a home and the luxury of having constantly new things, it seems to be very difficult to grasp that each one of us is exacerbating things just by doing what we are doing now, during our ordinary everyday lives. And that's the change that has to take place, for each one of us. Not carrying on doing everything we do currently and take for granted. There are big steps that can be taken by the wealthy and by large corporations, even industries and there are smaller steps we can do as households or individuals. Interestingly, we don't appear to understand that the efforts of the many little ones can have a big effect too. And the most powerful tool each one of us has is our spending power. Not buying stuff has a big impact on corporations and industries and thus also on wealthy individuals.

So why don't we do that? Well, we appear to have a pandemic that's going unnoticed, the dreaded FOMO!!! Fear Of Missing Out!!! So we live our lives at whims of those we deem fashionable in whatever interests us. Like Lemmings running after the one in front without looking where we are going. So we buy and throw away. I have heard and seen this in second-hand shops. The stuff is practically new! And we live like this, thanks to people we are paid almost nothing to make the stuff so cheap for us that we throw it away after using it a couple of times. There is something really wrong here. But it's everywhere. Look at how those who have been in the frontline of the Corona pandemic have given everything to help, but nobody wants to pay what that service deserves in comparison to other kinds of work. So an IT-worker gets paid several times the salary of a nurse, on whom his or her life may one day depend, not the other way round. The food waste which exceeds the amount needed to feed everybody in the world.

I'm sure you can find your own list of examples of the mass abuse going on in the world, always with the weakest and poorest bearing the brunt. So, if that is not the way forward, we will have to change, nobody else, you and me and everyone we know.

The other area where we resemble ostriches with their heads stuck in the sand is regarding climate change. It's a happening thing, this climate change, but what are we doing about it? Exactly the same problem as above: it requires immediate change, because we've already left it too late to avoid all the consequences, but it can be slowed down. If we don't get serious, then our grandchildren may end up killing each other over scraps. Already it is predicted that society is likely to start to fall apart in 20 years and we can see it happening all over with the different factions and tribes fighting each other in an ever increasing atmosphere of vituperative dialog which has already broken into open violence in many instances. We are not getting closer to each other, we're drifting apart and that is dangerous for all of us.

What get's me is that there are people involved here. How does the Boss of Dutch Royal Shell sleep at night knowing his company which pays for his luxury lifestyle is causing death by poisoning on a daily basis in the Niger Delta? How can the Bosses of Mining companies sleep easy when they know how many lives it is costing every day for them to have what they have? How can any of us sleep at night, knowing that somewhere a child is being prostituted for the gratification of the man who owns the factory that made the clothes in your wardrobe? The list is so big. Humans are quite sickening in their ability to ignore the reality behind their fa├žade. We really need to change, and we need to do it now..