Why Isn’t Everyone an Environmentalist?

people at the beach

Why isn’t everyone an environmentalist? I can’t tell you how many times I have wondered that.

I’ve not quite understood how it isn’t something everyone can agree on- the protection of the space in which you live, work, raise families, and play. 

The very space… the only space, which gives you everything you have in your life.

How people can’t see their connection to the natural world.

And how people don’t value its gifts and resources.

There’s a clear disconnect for us from where things originate, and how they get to us. For instance, we don’t see milk being collected, or food being grown and harvested, or the process it takes to make a computer.  If we want any of those things, we just hop over to the store, and they are on the shelves.

We’re so disconnected from the process any longer that we almost have the sense that things just… appear.

Because, after all, they kind of do, right?

I think that’s one reason why it’s hard for us to fathom our environmental impact.

environmentalism: a paradigm issue

I’ve spoken with a lot of people about climate change, and it’s interesting to see the varying points of view, and to analyze how that point of view was formed.

I knew a former NASA scientist that called it hubris to think human activity could cause such catastrophic damage as climate change. ⁠
I believe he saw the universe so large, and us so small a part of it, that we didn’t matter enough to have a planetary impact.⁠

Another believed politicians used climate change to control the rights of the people.⁠
I believe he thought his world so small, he couldn’t imagine having contributed to something with a global impact.⁠

Others believe in climate change, but that we aren’t capable of reversing the damage.⁠
I believe they thought the world more selfish and greed-driven than good and altruistic.⁠

But some believe we’ve neglected the natural world, and thrown off its balance, but that we can do something about it.
They went off to start blogs, small businesses, create apps, networking groups, and share their talents, all with the goal of promoting a more sustainable world.⁠
I believe those people thought that good could outweigh bad, selflessness could overturn greed, cooperation could restore balance, and a small group of these thoughtful people could create a paradigm shift.⁠

I’m one of these. And admittedly, my world view warps my vision of environmentalism.

I can’t understand why everyone doesn’t think like me.

But..isn’t that part of the problem?

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