I hear a lot of people promoting “dismantling capitalism.” It’s not easy to define capitalism. I’m not sure what laws they specifically mean to change, if changing it through legislation is the plan.
In any case, I see our culture as the problem. Many describe American culture is focused on the individual. I see it that way too, but what changed recently that led to the amount of pollution and acceptance of it so much greater than ever? You could say technology. I’d agree, but technology has changed culture. How so?
I don’t see how anyone could look at the level we accept pollution, for example in my recent Washington Square Park videos and pictures, and not see different values than any culture in history. I don’t like the values I see represented, but I don’t see how one could deny them. By its fruit is a tree known:
These values are what I’m trying to change. No amount of recycling, carbon offsets, or net-zero pledges will restore our abandoned values of stewardship and the Golden Rule. That’s not to say we’ve lost. It will take discipline, humility to nature, and other values to restore stewardship.
While there are counterexamples of individuals, American culture has abandoned the principle of “Leave it better than you found it”.
Regarding people helpless to prevent their suffering from our behavior that pollutes, American culture has mostly abandoned “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”
If you know of society-level counterexamples, not individual level, please let me know. I’d love to know of some to give me hope. So far I can’t think of any.
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