Letters to the Editor

Why wait to do the right thing? LETTER TO THE EDITOR

To the editor:

It’s a damn shame!

Why do we always have to wait until we have some sort of disaster before we “do the right things”?

Of course, the oil disaster in the Gulf is fresh in our minds. At the same time that many were insisting we must drill for offshore oil, the same people were characterizing efforts to regulate that activity as “burdensome.” Now who is suffering the “burdens” of our careless actions?

We fail to properly regulate and enforce coal-mine safety violations. Then 29 miners die in an accident that was preventable.

We allow our infrastructure to deteriorate. Then a major bridge collapses, killing 13 people injuring 145, and wreaking havoc on all who depended on that bridge.

We deregulate banks. We are repeatedly warned that this is leading us into a very dangerous financial situation. We do nothing, happily gobbling up the profits and comforts of the “good times.” Then we have the near collapse of not only the American economy, but the entire world economic system. Still, we have not done anything that will prevent this from happening again — and many are fighting tooth and nail against any changes that might impede our “free markets” — the markets they feel should have all the freedom they need to pillage average people.

Scientists tell us the net effect of all our actions is impacting the global climate. They say we must change, or see apocalyptic catastrophes resulting from our actions. Those who do not want to change try to debunk the scientists. Others say even if the global climate is changing, it is just natural processes that have happened for millions of years, processes that are not related to anything we humans are doing.

Why do they say this? Because if we are responsible, then we know we must change, and we certainly don’t want that. In fact, we just want more, more, more.

We want to be “free” to do and get whatever pleases us. We don’t care about future generations, even though we often say we care, and we certainly don’t care about any of the other creatures on the planet. After all, God gave us “dominion” over pretty much everything. Or if we don’t believe that, then we still believe our “superior” reasoning entitles us to take and do whatever we want.

Why do we always have to wait until we have some sort of disaster before we “do the right things”?

It’s a damn shame.

Steve Ford

Langley

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