Tide Change publishes submissions from a variety of authors whose work we admire and words we feel are relevant to our readers. Please note that the views, thoughts, and opinions expressed in the text belong solely to the author, and not necessarily to the author’s employer, organization, committee or other group or individual.
As impressive as the demonstrations were, the students are relatively powerless to change things. They are depending on many of the same people who are causing the climate change problems. But what would happen if they had some real power? What would happen if sixteen year-olds had the right to vote and run for office?
Tonight, as I contemplate what lies ahead for the new year, I am overpowered by the lyrics and melody to a song, “Can Anyone Tell,” I heard many years ago at an antiwar conference in Nelson, BC. The song envisions the Sun, Moon and Stars in a conference. The Sun, in this celestial gathering is saying to the stars and moon, “I see that you are sorrowful. For ages we shone for her (our Earth) and loved her so well, but now she is turning/busted and burning. Why would they do t is Can Anyone Tell?” The song goes on to paint a musical picture of this beautiful life-sustaining planet, beautiful in its seasons and life sustaining and asks repeatedly, “Why would they do this (destroy this beautiful, life giving planet)? Can anyone tell?”
In the unconvincingly feeble argument over the democratic value of the internet some have pointed to the effects of online discussion and incremental small bit fund raising as a counter to big money influences on political campaigns as proof positive that the internet has been good for democracy.
B.C. may have developed an allergy, an allergic reaction, if you will, to getting to the bottom of things.
It’s the only explanation. Whenever there’s more than a whiff of a scandal in the corridors of power, the government of the day often falls back on a line that could be easily lifted and paraphrased from the 1992 film A Few Good Men: “the public can’t handle the truth!”
The Comox Valley is known for many things but one aspect that attracted me to move here 18 years ago was its long record of activism. You merely have to take even a cursory look at all the different events, demonstrations, coalitions and campaigns and you can’t help being impressed by people’s commitment.
We all live in frames. They are the intellectual, psychic and emotional contexts within which we send and receive messages, establish and maintain relationships, see the world and give it meaning. In a word we don’t see the world the way it is; we see the world the way the way we are. And, we live in our stories about our world. When we work with people in different cultures and want to communicate with them we have to reframe. We have to try and understand their cultures and perspectives.
According to Dauncey, “When we frame our thoughts around the negative language of “energy descent” and “deliberate contraction,” we confirm people’s fear that solutions to the climate and ecological emergencies will wreck their comfortable lives. This is so harmful. It’s like a sports coach telling her athlete that winning a medal will ruin her family life, and besides, it’s impossible.”
The federal election has come and gone but the climate crisis continues on. Right wing politicians, closely allied with the fossil fuel industry, unhappy with the fact their boy Andrew Scheer is not the Prime Minister, are fanning the embers of Prairie resentment to build a separatist movement . This movement would include Alberta, Saskatchewan and in some permutations, Manitoba and parts of BC. It’s not really a separatist movement; it’s more of a pressure tactic to get Trudeau to kowtow even more to the goals of the Calgary Cabal of Climate Deniers and Greedy Oilmen. The Liberals buying a pipeline wasn’t enough for this group.
Today we are experiencing regular hurricanes coming across the Caribbean wreaking destruction on the Islands and Lower U.S; huge forest fires in Australia, the western United States and Canada; massive flooding in the farming areas of the Midwest; temperatures of 110 degrees scorching Paris, Berlin and most of Western Europe.
And all the while President Trump is removing as many protective environmental laws as he can get his hands on. It is not a pretty picture.
There are incorrect perceptions/ reactions to solutions to global warming; I see most environmentalists thinking that e-cars are a solution to global warming. I see it as incorrect group think. There are corporations and enviro organizations that are taking advantage of the Greta movement that will use it to continue the growth of capitalism; for example solar panels for Africans. They will be indebted to the corps to pay for them. Again people do not accept criticism of where this might lead us. Most people do not want to rock the boat and go against accepted views of the majority.