IS CLIMATE CHANGE A BLACK ISSUE?

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“For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.” Ephesians 6:12 (NKJV)

The aforementioned verse from the New King James Version of the Bible seems to adequately describe what is happening in the world today. There is chaos on every level, and the health and survival of our planet is at stake. Political fallout is having geological consequences. For example, currently the Amazon Forest, widely considered to be the “lungs of the planet” due to its impact on the carbon/oxygen cycle, is burning. The damage that is being done is unbelievable, and some pundits are afraid that the Earth will not recover from the loss, which will ultimately affect all life on Earth. Regarding the politics of the situation, indigenous people are alleging that the fires were deliberately started for the purpose of moving them off of their land by Brazil’s political leadership.

The devastation that this event can have is hard to imagine, but it is not the only negative thing happening to our planetary home. Consider this post on Facebook by wearthepeace: The Amazon is burning; The Arctic is on fire; The Coral Reefs are dying; Ecosystems are crashing; The oceans are boiling; Emissions are accelerating; Fertile soil is disappearing; Insects are vanishing. The last part of the post reads “Only when the last tree has withered, The last fish caught, The last river poisoned, Will we realize we cannot eat money.

The poster does not cite the author of this quote, but it has been said to originate with wise native elders on the planet. Basically, climate change is having a very negative impact on the entire world, and a lot of what is happening is politically generated. The politics are connected to decisions made by those who have the economic wherewithal to control what happens to our world; decisions are often driven by money. It is as though the powers-that-be do not believe that they will be impacted by the horrific decisions being made that are ruining our planet. Truly, if things continue as they are, our progeny will be left with an uninhabitable world devoid of resources.

While all of this is transpiring, very few Black people are paying attention to the issue of climate change. This may be partially due to the focus on racism, discrimination and white supremacy that is uppermost in most Black minds, especially in the United States where police are killing Black people and getting away with it. Moreover, the economic violence that has been forced on Black communities through unemployment, gentrification, crime, lack of affordable housing, and more, serves as very demanding red herrings keeping attention away from what is happening on a global scale.

With this in mind, Black people need to multi-task. Yes, there are a lot of issues that are threatening the well-being of our communities, but the truth of the matter is that the survival of our planet is also important. Many of the problems that we are facing will pale in comparison to trying to eke out an existence in a doomed world. Regarding this latter point, it’s interesting to note the tone of a lot of the science fiction fare offered to consumers. The theme of an apocalyptic future looms large in a lot of them. People seem resigned to face “the last days.”

There is another way that we can look at this, however. Our planet is being ravished by those who are in powerful positions that are politically vulnerable. Many of them, by the way, are building homes underground, or are talking about making plans to create colonies on Mars. The billionaire entrepreneur and engineering mogul Elon Musk is leading that last charge. The rest of us need to pay attention: as do many of the things occurring in our lives, especially in the United States, positive change can happen if we use our political power. We must VOTE for our interests. We need to use our votes to clean the swamp of those residing in the high halls of power who are driving us toward possible extinction.  Climate change is something that everyone needs to address. Thankfully, there are some Blacks who are trying to make a difference. B.I.G. (Blacks In Green) spearheaded by Naomi Davis is doing its part. Hopefully, the rest of us will jump on the bandwagon in order to save our home. We must give it our best try! A Luta Continua.

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