To the editor:

Why blame people with the least power for our problems? Why blame immigrants, homeless persons, or single mothers? Why not blame the people with the power to actually create change? Why not blame the politicians or the ultra rich who own them, or CEOs of corporations that pay no taxes while receiving subsidies far larger than the single mother?

Why do we focus on individual actions to solve structural problems like global warming? The COVID pandemic has clearly shown that many people will not act in the public interest, even if it costs nothing and is based on sound science.

If my individual carbon footprint becomes zero it has no impact on the big picture. We need sweeping economic incentives like a carbon tax, and regulatory enforcement to create the needed disruptive change.

People are more inclined to sacrifice when they feel part of a cooperative effort. Think rationing in WWII. Most people participated willingly, because they were part of a community effort advancing long term benefits.

Newsletter signup for email alerts

Why don’t we see our planet as a lifeboat with finite resources? It’s clear to astronauts our finite blue-green dot without borders floating in the dead of space is our only hope. On board a lifeboat with limited resources, we would all see the need for rationing.

Our hope for survival lies in realizing we must live within the sustainable regenerative capacity of the earth divided by the number of people on earth?

About 10% of the earth’s wealthiest population, including nearly all Americans, are responsible for 50% of climate emissions while the bottom 50% are responsible for 10% of emissions.

What do we want freedom from? Freedom from a vaccination or from the disease? Do we desire freedom to consume or freedom to live in a healthy environment? Freedom implies responsibility. Unregulated freedom for some means constraints for others.

Bryan Van Gorp

Alexandria, MN