This Magazine

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Don’t worry, we’re doomed

This Magazine Staff

Two bits of pretty scary news in the past two days:

1. World hunger ‘intolerable,’ with scant progress in decade: UN
2. Slumping Flames fall to Capitals. Er, no. Scratch that. Global warming will devastate economy: report

Not that any of us are necessarily that surprised, but the news hardly comes as a welcome reminder. I’ve often been pretty amazed at the collective optimism (ignorance?) of entire populations when things are at their worst, with no hope in sight. It’s bad enough to have to hear about it from afar, but with something as awful as abject hunger one question is never asked, let alone answered: Why aren’t more people worried? Can ignorance really be to blame when you hear warning after warning about how much trouble pollution is getting us in?

In North America there is nothing even approaching urgency toward fixing the problem of global warming. In the past, naysayers have been unwilling to sacrifice jobs and the economy to save the planet in some distant future. Now it looks like we’ll lose both. Stuff like this makes me want to banish any thought of procreating—why bring a child into a place like this?

Not that I’m writing my suicide note—I’m too inspired by the communities around me that actually care about social change—but sometimes it makes me wonder why more people aren’t giving up.

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