Dr. Stephen Kucera - Chapter 1 Summary/Reaction
In the introduction the author discusses his feelings about the importance of scientific literacy for our civilization. Currently, a swift and far reaching biocide is in progress and there may be ramifications for our civilization if we do not begin to address these issues soon. I agree with the author because I feel that our society has become so insulated from the effects of nature on our lives that we have lost a great deal of respect for it.
Think about it. We live and work in our air conditioned buildings, buy our food at a grocery store, drive around in automobiles which emit carbon dioxide and pollutants. We are shielded from the whims of Nature and their potential effects on our ability to survive in this world. Sound radical? I'm not what you would consider an environmental radical, or someone who feels that "dooms day" is right around the corner. I do all of the aforementioned things and I'm not arguing that these and other lifestyles should be abolished. The questions I would like to see our society address is: What impact does our lifestyle have and how can it be minimized? As you can see, these questions can become political. It's not that the questions that are posed by science are political in and of themselves. Rather, it is the answers we seek to find that could potentially impact our lives when they are used to establish policy. For example, based on projected population growth, China has a very restrictive policy about the number of children which a family may have. How would you feel if the government told you what the maximum number of children you could have? Ask yourself the same question another way. Do you think our civilization can survive with the continuing rate of unabated population growth?
If you don't, but you want to leave a better world for your children and other children of the world, what should we do? Let's also not forget all of the other species on the planet - my friend...
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