Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Don't Defend the Environment

What’s the environment ever done for you, really? It’s aided plagues and infectious disease. If you drink its seawater, you dehydrate and die. Drink its inland water and you get malaria, or merely walk on its soil for tetanus. Invisible murderousness. It gives you lightning. It tries to electrify you from the sky. It gives you quicksand and sinkholes, the earth disappears before your feet. It gives you strong winds and tornadoes to blow away the houses you built to deal with strong rains and hurricanes. If that doesn’t work you get floods, landslides, and tsunamis to wash away any human progress. It corrodes, rusts, and quakes to destroy any attempt to coexist. It gives you large deserts and extreme colds, impossible to traverse. Even the peaceful trees suffer mass extinction by immolation for no good reason.

Nature gets a lot of credit as the arena for life, but it’s also the number one culprit in making it unlivable. Nature is overrated. It’s synonymous with all that is good. When something’s good, it’s all-natural. When you need to impress a date, you act natural. But the word is judged only on its positive merits. People go on and on about the environment from their climate-controlled rooms with artificial lighting, in buildings constructed with the bones of the same trees they aim to protect. Nature isn’t kind to humans, certainly less so to animals. It’s a brutal legacy of scavenging, famine, and barely survival. The entire term is misused to begin with. We are part of nature, and everything comes from nature, by extension anything we do can be considered natural. Now have a swig of some All-Natural Battery Acid™.

Nature worship needs to end. We should, yes, live in equilibrium with the environment. But, nature makes living very difficult for everyone, and it’s another case of The House Always Wins. Are the polar ice caps melting? Probably. But so what, stop victim-blaming. Industry exists to meet the demands of population. Sure, someone sees dollar signs, and there’s excess need, but generally speaking there’s utility and functionality at the core of most enterprise. Nature is not above us because it occasionally gives us a beautiful vista. Nor is it below us for the natural disasters and brutal living conditions. If this is a battle, nature is far, far ahead.

It would be downright, fullstop immoral not to curtail and subjugate mother nature in every realistic and conceivable way possible. Environmentalism and science go hand-in-hand, and scientists don’t just study human effects, but nature’s innately self-destructive habitat. There’s no case not to try to predict and manipulate a volatile system. We do this with farming, housing, and weather systems all in defiance of nature. These are basic measures of safety. That’s how you “save the environment,” not some misguided notion of letting nature “do her thing” because you don’t like human nature.

Are water bottles wasteful? Yes. But who would need them if the outside world was convenient, predictable, and inhabitable. It would be nice if the weather was always 72°, and the ground was comfortable to sleep on, and fresh water was everywhere instead of relegated to a few, specific areas. It would be nice if we could drink without the chance of disease, or have built-in sanitation systems, or a biology impervious to sickness, that was not an option afforded to anyone. I’ll stop using plastic when nature stops having a monsoon on my parade.

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