Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Al Gore Just Made Me Cry

Usually I'll put movie reviews over at Stranger Than Fiction, but I know that a lot of you don't bother to go over to that blog like ever, so this is where this post needs to be.

But if you haven't already, YOU MUST ALL SEE An Inconvenient Truth. I don't care if you're a Democrat or Republican or a Communist. See this damn movie, okay? Normally, this Jaded NYer would watch a film like this, spit at the screen and yell, "PROPAGANDA!! LEFTIST PROPAGANDA!!!" But unfortunately I don't have that luxury anymore.

This past year I've been working for a PR firm with a client that, for all their faults, have forced me to delve deep into the topic of global warming. Sure, what they have me write has to be skewed to fit the client (and trust me, the thought of that has me morally bankrupt as of late) but the facts are still before me. In order to write the articles for these clients I have to comb news articles, scientific journals, charts, speech transcripts, etc, etc, etc to get the facts. And honey, the facts ain't good.

Global warming is real. Yes, it is a naturally occurring phenomena but it is also accelerating at unprecedented speeds due to human activity. That was confirmed by the United Nation's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change- scientists from all over the world who came together to report on the issue of global warming, its causes, effects and the possibility of mitigating those effects (how did you like that SAT word?).

But I write about it everyday. And like with anything else one is exposed to too often, I've become a little desensitized to it all. Until I watched An Inconvenient Truth.

And something must be said for the fact that I've had the DVD for 5 days but refused to watch it right away. I knew why- I didn't want to know what was in that film. I didn't want to know that the effects of global warming could possibly see New York City- my beloved New York City, underwater. Or that polar bears are DROWNING because they are having to swim farther distances just to find some ice to rest on. Or that on the very protected area of the Arctic (or was it Alaska) where the Bush Administration wants to drill for oil, the ground is only frozen enough for trucks to drive across it 75 days out of the year...as opposed to 260-something days from just a few decades ago.

I didn't want to know any of this, because you know what? Once you know this stuff, it's hard not to do something about it or act surprised when that huge tidal wave takes out the Statue of Liberty.

(I suppose the same can be said of whatever it is that is ailing me- as long as I don't know what's going on I won't have to do anything about it and just drop dead from it one day out of the blue. But once those test results are in there will be no turning back...)

But too late. Because of my obsession with Netflix, now I know. And goddamn if it isn't inconvenient!!

However, I cannot sit around and not do something, anything, to make a difference. For the polar bears. For the ice caps. For New York City. Only a few things in this world make me cry: the memory of seeing my grandmother entombed; the ending to Love Story; Ani DiFranco's song, "Reckoning". But the visuals of the disappearing lakes and rivers and glaciers, and the enormity that will be the hundreds of millions of displaced people as a result of the ocean level rising just 20 lousy feet had me bawling like a baby after I finally told K to go to sleep.

I'm usually on here ranting and raving and joking and not taking anything or anyone serious, but tonight I'm sooooo serious, like never before. I implore all of you, if you're not already, DO SOMETHING. This affects all of us. I was wrong before, and the quote was right: no man is an island. We ALL need to stop the damage we are causing our planet and stop it now.

You can start by seeing An Inconvenient Truth. And then follow it up with a visit to http://www.climatecrisis.net/. And then end it with an action- ANY ACTION- that will help make a difference.

*smooches...wanting to be an example for my children and their children and their children's children*
al can't do this by himself...if you won't help, who will?