Earth In The Balance
Richard Nixon was praised in the early 70s for having the vision to start the Environmental Protection Agency. It was viewed optimistically as an acknowledgement that industrial societies must be sensitive to the environmental imbalances and damage that is wrought from modern industrial processes.
Unfortunately, the early efforts to draw attention to environmental pollution remained largely symbolic as American industry reneged on its social responsibility to rectify and reverse the damage done by virtue of its normal industrial operations.
Given this reluctance and irresponsibility on the part of American industry, the world now stands at the brink of an irreversible trend towards global suicide. How can Americans, or for that matter, the world, embrace industrialization if we know that to embrace it is to accept suicide -- on a global scale. It is utterly insane for industrial societies to continue in this course that leads to a dead-end. To be sure, the future of humanity, and the earth, lies in the balance.
It is high time for political forces to muster the vision and the courage to confront industry and demand, through legislation, that urgent and corrective measures be taken immediately to reverse that which will ultimately kill us all. There is simply no more time for delays or postponements. Clearly the time is now.
Unless industry reforms itself in environmentally friendly ways, there is no future for the industrial revolution. The world should, in the absence of reform, reject industrialization out of hand. It should realistically be seen as a metaphor for the individual hooked on cigarettes -- it will kill him.
How can we possibly raise our children in good faith to believe that industry and science are beneficial to society when we are confronted by our ultimate demise through its embrace?
We need a radical and unparalleled world effort to uncover, discover and implement solutions for our industrial ills. In this effort, hopefully science will play an essential role. For absent an environmental healing, we will continue to look into an increasingly darkening mirror that portends no real hope for the future of humanity and the earth.