Saturday, March 1, 2014

The War on Humans

I was delighted to read an article in the New York Times magazine on attempts to "de-extinct" creatures like the Passenger Pigeon using genetic techniques reminiscent of Jurassic Park. It's fascinating to read of the ambition to repopulate the earth with long gone creatures like woolly mammoths, saber-toothed tigers, and Great auks. Certain ethical concerns notwithstanding, this is the sort of work that thrills those like myself who believe in conservation and who love the planet and its rich flora and fauna.

Then I turned to a piece in First Things by Wesley J. Smith who talks about the darker side of environmentalism.

Smith has written a book that documents the war being waged against humanity by the radical environmental left. If the goals of these people weren't so chilling they'd provide us with much opportunity for mirth and merry-making. Here are some excerpts from Smith's summary of the book's thesis.
Beginning in the late 1960s, a subversive misanthropy began to gestate within environmentalism. This view does not see the earth and the fullness thereof—in the Biblical turn of phrase—as ours to develop responsibly for human benefit, but instead castigates humans as a “disease” (or “parasites,” “maggots,” “cancer,” take your pick) afflicting the planet, best treated with the antibiotic of radical human depopulation and implacable opposition to economic growth.

....Reasonable people can differ on the persuasiveness of the evidence for man-caused global warming and the extent of danger that it might present. But there should be no disagreement that children should not be taught to hate humanity in the cause of preventing a feared climate catastrophe.

In one advocacy commercial, an elementary school teacher asks how many of her students are willing to commit to the cause. All but two raise their hand. She smiles at the two dissenters and pushes a big red button: BLAM! They explode so violently and graphically that their classmates are splatted with blood and sheets of flesh.

In a similar vein, the Website of the Australian Broadcasting Network featured a children’s game called “Professor Schpinkee’s Greenhouse Calculator,” a now erased on-line game that determines the age at which the player—remember, this was aimed at children—should die because they had exhausted their individual share of the world’s resources.

Misanthropy in the name of preventing climate change is only the beginning. The “nature rights” movement seeks to grant flora and fauna a “the right to exist, persist, maintain and regenerate its vital cycles”—essentially a right to life that explicitly erases the moral distinction between humans and all other life forms.

The putative rights of nature may also extend to inanimate matter. The Universal Declaration of the Rights of Mother Nature announces that the rights of nature are “inalienable . . . without distinction of any kind, such as may be made between organic and inorganic beings, origin, use to human beings, or any other state.”

The movement has made astonishing inroads in just a few years. Nature has already been granted “rights” by Ecuador and Bolivia, as well as in some thirty U.S. municipalities, including Santa Monica, California. Ban ki-Moon, the Secretary General of the United Nations has thrown his support behind the movement, and nature rights has been proposed for inclusion in an eventual UN treaty to fight climate change.

The “ecocide” movement seeks to punish large scale projects like the Alberta Tar Sands as an international crime akin to genocide and ethnic cleansing. A river in New Zealand has been granted full rights of “personhood,” as an “integrated, living whole” possessing “rights and interests.” Mainstream environmentalists, such as Sir David Attenborough, have extolled China’s tyrannical one-child policy that includes forced abortion and female infanticide.

Declaring war on humans won’t make for a cleaner planet. To the contrary, the green misanthropes harm the cause by undermining environmentalism’s good public standing. It’s time for responsible environmentalists to push the anti-humanists back to the movement’s fringe, where they belong.
Radical environmentalists are just one part of a much larger, more comprehensive assault on the traditional American way of life. Every institution in the country - education, community, marriage, family, church - is under intense pressure, and being rocked by repeated and relentless challenges to its very legitimacy. It has been the ambition of the left at least since Engels and Marx wrote their Communist Manifesto in 1848 to destroy the traditional way of life, as well as the capitalist economic system which has been a blessing to so many of the world's people, and replace these with a centralized command economy populated by atomized, individualized workers alienated and isolated from every association and institution which vies with the state for the individual's loyalty.

The role being played by radical environmentalists in dehumanizing man is just one battle in the long struggle to destroy our understanding of ourselves as creatures with unique dignity, worth, and specialness, a specialness that derives from the belief that we are created in the image of God.

Once belief in God is no longer viable, then belief that man holds a unique place in the cosmos soon becomes obsolete as well. Man will then be seen as a mere animal just like any other mammal, with no special status, rights or prerogatives. He'll be ineluctably reduced to the status of livestock - herded, manipulated, controlled, and, when it suits the whim of the state, slaughtered.

That's the trajectory we've been on in the U.S. for several generations now and in the last twenty years the pace of our dehumanization and atomization seems to have accelerated. It will continue to accelerate unless more people realize what's happening and, like Wesley Smith, stand firmly against it.

His book is available on Kindle and Nook.