Tuesday, October 14, 2014

What do Ebola and Climate Change Have in Common?


No, climate change did not cause Ebola and probably has nothing to do with is dramatic spread. But what they do have in common is that few listened to the alarms. Ebola was first discovered in 1976. Silent Spring was published in 1962 and the environmental movement blossomed in the 60s and 70s. The problem is that very few listened to the warnings about Ebola or concerns for the environment or climate.

Both climate change and Ebola are devastating. Both had people who warned about their effects if ignored. And yet, the warning have been ignored and, even to this day, many still take neither seriously. Perhaps great change requires momentous events. People get so stuck in their ways, their routines, habits, comfort zones (no matter how uncomfortable they may be), that fear of change is greater than the fear of the unknown. And yet, these types of events, Ebola and climate change, are altering the course of human history. What is perhaps most feared, is what is happening the most-CHANGE. That horrible event that turns things upside down, alters the way people live, their work, social relationships, their future, is happening because people chose, consciously or unconsciously, to avoid the very notion that change was coming, caused, in fact, by the unwillingness to confront change.

It is said what is feared the most is what is most attracted. Fear is a powerful magnet. It is only by addressing issues that they are replaced by non-issues ... or new ones. Humanity's failure to address climate change and pandemic only serve to increase their threat. While there are often too many chicken little's, too many cries of "Wolf," it is necessary to pay some heed to those with credentials who warn of impending change, who have no monetary interest in the status quo.

Put away the fears, approach issues intelligently, learn the facts, and understand that nothing stays the same.

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