Opinion

OUT ON A LIMB: The world may not end but many things should

By the time you read this you may be dead.

Or whatever limbo the world is supposed to be in once the Mayan calendar runs out, or ends or whatever it’s supposed to do.

One thing I haven’t heard is what time is it supposed to end today? Was at the stroke of midnight? Or noon? Perhaps, 2:33 p.m., which means we still have time.

All joking aside, the prophesy of the world coming to an end today because that’s when the Mayan calendar came to an end, has seriously stressed out a lot of people and some to an extent that it’s not a laughing matter.

So, although, the world has not ended, this could be seen as an opportunity to end the world as we know it. Instead of the end of the world, perhaps we could begin a new one?

Let’s change our mindset. Let’s create our own Great Leap Forward, a theory that proposes that human culture and technology suddenly blossomed about 40-50,000 years ago. Prior to that we were biological modern but culturally and intellectually, we were little better than animals driven by instinct and at the mercy of our environment. All of a sudden, we changed. Our toolmaking leapt forward and our social organization became more complex and our survival as a species became more assured as a result.

Given the environmental threat to our survival as a species today, don’t you think it’s not a bad time for another great leap forward?

In British Columbia there’s been a small leap forward. There seems to be significant opposition to the Northern Gateway pipeline that transcends political and social lines. Behind it is a realization – an acceptance – that this pipeline will traverse one of the most beautiful tracts of land on this planet. The potential loss is so obvious that only the most blinded by development cannot see it. Losing one of the last wildernesses on Earth will make us look like complete fools. Remember the line from the old Sixties song I’m a Stranger Here: “Oh, you crazy fools, don’t you know you had it made?” The northern half of British Columbia from the coast to the Alberta prairies is a paradise not lost on many of us thankfully.

So, the response to the Northern Gateway could be seen as a local leap forward. Are there signs of other leaps forward? I hold great hope for our automobile manufacturers to be producing more non-emission vehicles than gasoline burning ones soon. Great strides are being made there.

Socially, can we come up with a solution to the continuing incidences of school children being gunned down? Can we at least come up with that?

The calendar may not end today but there are other things that should.

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