THIS is a call to our youth to join young Swedish climate change activist, Greta Thunberg, in protesting against the inaction of governments to protect the environment.
Scientific hence incontrovertible proofs abound that climate change is caused by human activities. Yet we adults either refuse to accept its reality or refuse to do anything about it. We are neither stopping our own activities nor protesting against those of other people’s that worsen climate change and hasten the threat of mass extinction.
But it’s really the youth’s world that we adults are destroying. It’s their dream, to use Greta’s words, we are killing. Adults in government, business, education and religion in the Philippines have been wasting away our part of the planet’s resources, exploiting and using them in ways that leave our youth with a veritably dying homeland while the rest of us are mostly indifferent to their irresponsible activities.
Earth, of course, like any other living thing could die. But adults who are abusing it would not be around to see this happen. It’s the youth, therefore, the young inheritors of this planet and tomorrow’s adults that should care that we leave them with a sustainable planet.
A foreigner-friend of mine tells me he cannot imagine a Filipino Greta. I am not clear why but he hints at our lack of training in critical thinking, hence the youth’s emotional vulnerability to ideological indoctrination. Anyway, my grudging reluctance to agree with him pushes me to make this call to our youth to wake up to the reality of climate change and rise with all the Greta’s in the world to fight the injustice being done to mother earth.
Something has to be done and something can be done. Mayor Edgar Labella’s three million trees is not a bad idea. I also wish I had the mathematical genius to extrapolate the number of trees I have used in my life as house material, firewood, writing pad or toilet tissue, but I am planting as many trees as I can in an earnest effort to replace all the trees I have effectively felled in my life. Somebody else suggests that when we travel we might carry seeds of fruits we have eaten and throw them into vacant lots where they might grow into trees.
But Mayor Labella and some of us can only plant so many trees. Besides, so much more needs to be done. Like fossil fuel needs to be replaced with renewable energy and single-use plastics cut down to a minimum.
It is tomorrow’s world of today’s youth that is under threat of mass extinction. Hence, the youth must lead the charge against human activities that cause climate change’s destructive effects. Young Greta is leading it in the world. Filipino Greta’s should lead it in Cebu and the Philippines.