Monday, July 19, 2010
The World's Gone Crazy - Or Is It Just Me?
What the hell is going on, people? Seriously.
We've got a long-term oil problem in the Gulf, and suspicions that that shiny cap may lead to gas blowing out from other unstable areas of the sea bed, while BP spins the story to be, "Hey, if you want us to open it up and let it start spewing again, then it's on your head." Nobody willing to step up and say, "Do THIS." And then take responsibility.
The drug companies are trying to get the FDA to approve cholesterol-lowering medicine for kids. It's so much easier to give the kids a pill along with their vitamin, because everyone's working multiple jobs, nobody's able to be home to boot them out from in front of the television or the computer, take away the chips and say, "Go out. Play. Come home when it's dinner time." So the next generation sits on their widening little butts, not even knowing what they're missing. Besides - if they went out to play, there's probably no one else out there to play with.
A science blog actually agreed to let PepsiCo. host a page called "Food Frontiers."
Pepsi knows a lot about good, wholesome food, I'm sure we all agree.
Not surprisingly, they got slammed.
They took it down after their scientists starting leaving en masse in protest.\
Now that I'm a corporate type I realize that I'm totally losing touch with the natural world. I wake up, dress, drive to work, spend the day in an office, drive home, and spend my evening inside working on my book, my show, playing Freecell and trying to stay awake until 11. I am a hothouse flower and that is not me at all. But it is who many of us are.
It's unnatural. And it's dangerous. You could almost begin to forget that our lives rely on that world outside our windows.
There is one bright spot. A couple of years back I stumbled upon a small blurb about a proposal to lease drilling rights all over my area of New York for horizontal gas drilling. I did a series of stories and the news started to spread, thanks to some of the environmental groups I spoke with.
The movie "Gasland" is doing the rest. It was shown at a school auditorium nearby this past weekend and suddenly the entire region is mobilizing with online activists who are emailing, writing, calling and visiting their legislators, concerned that the hazards that Pennsylvania, Texas, West Virginia and other states which are already allowing hydrofracking are facing will be coming soon to a flaming sink near them.
I am impressed with the power of film. Similarly, our friends at Tribe of Heart are opening hearts and minds with their film, "Peaceable Kingdom". It's an attempt to reconnect that mental schism between our love for animals and how we get the food on our plates. They're winning awards all over the country and audiences are reacting thoughtfully, starting conversations, starting to talk - just as they'd hoped.
It's a Mad Mad World, my friends. But I don't think it's hopeless yet.