If you smacked your forehead with your hand when reading this post title, then raise that hand.
Hmm. I see a lot of raised hands out there.
I don't actually believe that, mind you. But I recently got into a discussion on a message board about whether global warming was real and worrisome or just a load of hogwash. Though a lot of people voted in that thread's poll that global warming was a problem, most of the people who posted a reply message seemed to give opinions like that. Below average temperatures in their area this year clearly meant that global warming was just a big lie.
(Good to know that global warming and climate change aren't a problem. I guess the fact that in August we saw temperatures near the freezing mark is just something I forgot happening every other year. No climate change here, folks, move along.)
Someone heard from a friend of a friend who saw it on TV that some emails from "scientists" were leaked, and it turns out that they're worried because they can't prove global warming and their funding might be cut because of it.
("Scientists". I love that. Because physicists and climatologists are exactly the same, have the same career interests, and the same knowledge about the same subjects.)
Plenty of people claim that because the earth goes through cycles and that both hotter and colder temperatures have been the norm for the world in the past, that this really is just all natural and not a problem at all. It's just part of the cycle.
(Never mind that it's happening faster than it ought to, coincides with a lot of other problems that humans have caused, and is partly occuring because of man-made pollutants and interferences. It may have come about naturally eventually, but not so quickly and not because the planet always needs an atmospheric toupee.)
I see people saying that sure, it's probably a problem, but it's not going to make that much difference in their lifetime, so why should they bother making sacrifices in their lives anyway?
(Good to know that they care so very much about everyone who has to live on this planet after them, and that they're perfectly happy to leave their messes for somebody else to clean up. Didn't we get taught to clean up our own messes in elementary school?)
Sometimes I want to scream at these people that if they'd just open their eyes and look beyond their own tiny portions of the world then they'd see there's a problem. I want to shout at them that global warming doesn't mean that every single place in the world gets above-average temperatures, and that atmospheric heating can, in fact, lead to colder temperatures because of air currents and evaporation. I want to beat them about the head until they understand that we need to do something other than sit around and talk about whether or not it's all a big conspiracy theory.
Which makes this post somewhat ironic, in retrospect, but I'm making it anyway.
I admit that I don't do as much as I can, and I admit that the actions of one lone person are probably going to mean jack in the grand scheme of things. But I'm trying more and more each day, and I also know that I'm not alone. There are thousands of others out there like me, trying to do their little bit to reducing the carbon footprint and to living sustainably and without so much excess, and little by little, the effects add up. We likely won't see the planetary effects we're having in our lifetime, but by damn, we're trying, and that's more than some people can claim.
And you know, even if we're all wrong and the world's doing just fine despite us, I won't be ashamed to tell people that I'm living a better life. I waste less, I do more, and I'm happy for it. How, I ask you, is that worse than they people who waste more and do less and are only happy when they can prove they have more than their neighbours?
My lifestyle isn't for everyone. But this planet is. And isn't it about time we started taking better care of it?