Sunday, January 14, 2018

shitholing: the political and personal



What is most disturbing about Trump’s shithole comment is its accuracy.

Meaning, America has been shitholing other nations since its inception. So when the president calls some countries Shithole Nations, I wonder if Americans are aware of their complicity in the shitholing we do through our political and personal choices.

Most seem unaware of America's track record of decimating infrastructure and seeding or fomenting instability in order to extract resources from other countries. Never mind the systematic, deadly xenophobia that our government has been militarily justifying for decades, furthered by our drone loving previous president. But somehow calling countries shitholes is deemed worse than the violent shitholing that has been American foreign policy.

While the EPA has been protecting Americans since 1970, under a Pruitt EPA, people fear what will happen to American air, water and soil. Americans, however, don’t seem afraid about the air, water and soil of countries where consumer goods are manufactured. Concerned mostly with how cheaply we can get anything, Americans are appallingly unaware and unconcerned about the environmental shitholing of other nations and the consequential health impacts on people and other living beings.

Americans are also concerned about national parks here being turned into drilling sites, but are again unconcerned while forests in Malaysia and Indonesia burn for the palm oil in Girl Scout cookies and other packaged goods. We are even unfazed by the nightmare that is Tar Sands, devastating the arboreal forests of Canada. If you have bananas on your kitchen counter then you should indeed be familiar with America’s history in Central America known as the Banana Republic. These extractive practices shithole indigenous ways of life and drive extinction. 

These are but a few examples of the pervasive, consistent shitholing done to other countries to support the American Dream, predicated on a delusional Manifest Destiny. 

We’re in effect ok with turning some countries into shitholes for extraction, manufacturing of cheap goods and yummy treats and to offshore waste, but are upset if someone disparages those same countries verbally.

And you know what makes it worse? After destabilizing governments and impoverishing countries for our agenda, we further shithole them by giving them our unwanted stuff in the name of charity so we can feel good about ourselves.

Don't even get me started on the shitholing we deny in our own country that unwittingly leads to shitholing abroad.

But all of this pales in comparison to Trump’s words?


Friday, January 5, 2018

a stone's throw


Image result for trumps global warming tweet
It is easy to go off about Trump's absurd global warming tweets. But before spraining your digits in a FB circle jerk, hold up.

Consider this Biblical reference for a moment. Remember those dudes all eager to stone a woman then Jesus starts scratching their sins in the dirt?

Pretty sure we're climate deniers on par with Tweety King himself. 

Is your home powered by renewable energy? How about your transportation? Butchered your own bacon lately? Did you grow, spin and do whatever else transforms plants into cloth for those yoga pants? You pedaling your laptop right now?

Yea. Me neither.
Each of us, tweeting climate denial in a minor key of our own.

With the stoning episode I always wondered why whoever she got jiggy with isn't also about to get executed. That applies here too. 

Flora and fauna, including people the world over, are being pummeled with unnatural disasters and habitat loss-literally facing extinction-while us science loving, nature loving, justice seeking, crunchy AF folk are coasting; expecting external forces: governments, NGOs and businesses to do the heavy lifting of protecting us from ourselves and paying our environmental dues. 

Two thousand years later and we’re still seeking scapegoats and heroes.

The future in store for my three daughters is terrifying; not, because of Trump. But because we, collectively, are and have been destroying it.

So instead of lining up stones to hurl, let's use them to build the future we need. 

And, let's start with an antidote tweet:

On our planet, 2018 could be the HOTTEST year on record. Perhaps I could do a little bit of that good old research to help me figure out what I can do personally and communally to protect against what the POTUS isn’t. Get to it!

In the spirit of New Year's Resolutions, here's what I'm committing to for 2018 with my pile of rocks. 

1) aggressively insulate my home
2) consistently purchase food from local farmers
3) invest money in stocks committed to planetary well being

The future is just a stone's throw. What will you do with yours?