Harrowed, redux Wednesday May 26, 2010, 0 comments

I’ve always prided myself on being what I’ve always called ‘responsible’. I try to live by my own personal manifesto. While it doesn’t specifically say anything about environmentalism, it does encourage minimalism in thought, deed and impact.

Now we have oceans burning, oil washing up on the shore, birds and fish dying by the metric ton. Sounds like end times to me. I am surprised it took this long for a major offshore drilling catastrophe. The problem isn’t that I don’t care. The problem is that I’ve been so harrowed, told so frequently that I am a bad person because of what I eat or wear, that I’ve become desensitized.

Hells bells people, I’m tired of being harrowed.

We don’t drive much, and when we do, it’s in a pretty efficient car. I cycle to work as often as I can. We walk to the grocery store. We actually chose to live in the city so we don’t have to rely on an automobile. We get bonus points for living in the city, because our carbon footprint is lower than that of people in the suburbs, apparently.

I don’t eat meat. I think that pate is a little bit cruel to the geese. We don’t have air conditioning in our house. We don’t own a gas-powered lawn mower. We don’t run our television all evening every evening, because we don’t have cable. On purpose. We care about these sorts of things.

I care about the environment. I care about the health of the world, and I care about ending war and famine. I don’t want the oceans to be depleted of fish.

I care about a lot of the same things that some of the most hardcore activists in the world care about. But I’m tired of being told I am a bad person, and that everything I do is bad. Because it’s simply not true.

I may not be creating as small an impact as some, but I don’t create nearly as much as others. My life choices are based upon the things I think are important. Being responsible is important to me. Responsibility in moderation. Because not everything is important.

If everything’s important, than nothing is. In the immortal words of Ford Prefect, ‘Sod the geese. You can’t care about every damned thing.’


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