Posts tagged Planetary Rights
Without land, water, and culture, we are nothing
“Deranger: The river systems are the life, and … grandmother moon, grandfather sun— everything is alive. When you’re raised with that relationship, that the foxes are your cousins and the eagles are your brothers, you start to have a totally different relationship and interaction with everything around you. And so much of humanity has lost that. But indigenous people have retained it somehow.
If you kill the land, the waterways, the air and culture of those people, you essentially kill those people. And that, in fact, is the definition of genocide.” Eriel Deranger of Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation
People from the United States are called Americans just as people from Spain are called Spaniards. The word Spaniard is descriptive. Within it are connotations that tell us generally a lot about the language they probably speak, where they live geographically, the variety of foods and wines locally available and, providing we were informed, a lot about their past experiences as a group. Huge numbers of residents would admit that they love their country and would gladly serve in a military capacity to save their families and country from destruction.
Similarly, humans are Earthlings. Knowing that a person is an Earthling also reveals a lot about how they live and think. Unfortunately, however, being a human does not carry the same associative value as being a Spaniard or American. The Spanish, for instance, share an organised and regulated social cohesion. Most citizens accept the rule of law and benefits and limitations on the rights of citizenship. Spanish interests fall within the guidelines enforced by national and international law. Even a corporation has been given the legal standing of a person.
Being an Earthling however carries none of the above. A country is free to not only assume the right to destroy, for instance a huge rainforest or heavily pollute the air on its way around the globe, but does so and has been doing so for many years with impunity. The many examples of these atrocities are so extremely well known by a great number of people all around the globe that there is no need to list them or explain them here. Although we know and do our measure of tsk, tsk whilst our relatives are killed in a gigantic twister or a whopping typhoon or the American Southwest is doomed to experience devastating desertification because the transpiration of millions of trees that at one time turned into moisture that was carried on high by global wind currents and dropped in the Southwest now carry “hot air”.
Maybe we should each ask ourselves – What is the planet worth to us?