Imagine if bacteria had self-awareness. I know, that’s just ludicrous, right? Well, imaginations are powerful things so roll with me on this one.
For the sake of context, out of the 10 trillion cells in your body, about 90% of them are non-human microorganisms. Not so different from species of creatures inhabiting a planet.
Most of the bacteria in our bodies are cool. They’re just hanging out, keeping us healthy. But every so often, some bacteria that can make you sick move into the neighborhood. From their point of view, they’re just doing their thing like all the other microorganisms. The problem is, their goals only serve themselves.
Sometimes if a particularly nasty strain gets a hold of a person, they may die. Now if these bacteria hypothetically had consciences, right before the person dies, do you think they say to themselves, “Holy crap. I think we screwed up.”
You might call me silly for this whole self-aware bacteria thing, but look higher up the food chain and you’ll find human beings doing what they do. But that’s sort of the problem. For example, did you know March 2015 saw the highest concentration of carbon dioxide since we began tracking it back in 1980? Yup, despite all our awareness and attempts to curb fossil fuel emissions, we still managed to outdo ourselves.
While speaking with my buddy Chakktor the other night, I realized something: there really is no guarantee we won’t royally screw up our planet (at least for our standards) sometime in the near future. There are significant ecological concerns that seem to be an afterthought if outward appearances are to be believed. Some of these concerns could have been properly addressed in the more than 30 years I’ve been alive – a period of time where I was witness to many a public service announcement on ye olde boob tube about pollution and ecological awareness.
For Pete’s sake, I grew up with a cartoon about multi-ethnic teenagers who used magic rings to call upon the power of an eco-friendly Superman by the name of Captain Planet. And yet here we are.
I trusted you Ma-Ti.
Humanity has a lot on its plate nowadays. I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but there seems to be a decent amount of unrest as of late. While the world is off bickering and debating about racial issues, religious freedom, gender equality, or whatever large or small conflict that concerns a subset of humanity, let’s not lose sight of issues that affect all of us.
On that note, I call BS on campaigns that put the onus on the everyday person. If you live in America, you know what I mean. I’ve always heard finger-wagging messages telling me to recycle, carpool, or, hell, buy a hybrid car. However, we need to put pressure on our government and corporations to follow suit.
Hey, almond farmers in California, you hear that? Stop using all the goddamn water if you basically know there’s a crisis going on.
I swear, I’m gonna be a full-blown hippie before I die. That’s saying a lot because I never would have thought I’d basically become a Planeteer. A vegetarian one at that. Did I also mention self-aware? Yeah, that too. Self-aware enough to realize the house that we’re living in is filthy and we need to take some major steps before the point of no return.
Before we say to ourselves, “Holy crap. I think we screwed up.”
Peace out, party people.