Sunday, September 14, 2014

Homo Suicidus

 This picture came in the mail and was posted by someone in Los Angeles. While I've been tempted to do messages like this I've held back... out of sheer optimism I guess. If I thought we were actually doomed as a species I probably wouldn't bother with signposting, or much of anything I suppose except having a good time.

As more and more unanticipated feedback loops kick in - drowning forests, Siberian methane blasts, arctic wildfires - the more optimistic I become that at least our scientific community will get serious about finding a fix to all this, whether through geo-engineering, plankton blooms, CO2 sequestration or whatever ideas are out there yet to be discovered and implemented.

I do believe, however, that so long as we keep filling the gas chamber we call an atmosphere with poisons, the term "Sapiens" (Latin for "intelligent" or "wise") is no longer appropriate and should be replaced with "Suicidus" (which should be self-explanatory.) 

What I find fascinating about our situation is, despite our sophistication and knowledge, the simplicity of our failing, which boils down to an apparent inability to sacrifice at all now for the benefit of generations yet to come. I don't remember much from bible studies, but I do remember the phrase "not for ourselves or for our children, but for our children's children..." popping up now and again. And while it's altogether possible our ancestors were just as selfish as we are, at least they were willing to pay lip-service to the generations yet to come. 

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