Hot topic questions

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To the Editor:

Has it been hot enough for everyone? Are we clearer about how unbearable this heat — worse in many places — is for millions of people around the world? Is it not staring us in the face that large numbers of people are suffering and will migrate in search of relief?

We are responsible for so much human misery all over the world due to global warming. Transportation contributes a third of the dangerous carbon buildup in the atmosphere that causes the increasing heat. We are contributing way more than our share.

How can we, knowing this, possibly continue our overuse of fossil fuels, for example, our devotion to our cars and the convenience of driving anywhere, any time?

Can we try to change a bit — use the bus (check out the VTA, it’s great), carpool, bike, walk, send kids to school in school buses, not in their parents’ or their own cars? Can we scale down our need for convenience and immediate gratification?

Or do we give up and decide that it is too late, we love our privileged lifestyle too much, and that with many of the rest of the world’s children, our children and grandchildren will lead compromised lives?

We are mistaken if we think that our recycling efforts let us off the hook for our contribution to the deterioration of the planet. Fear and shame do not lead to positive action or change. Our focus must be on the goal we share — a healthy planet, capable of sustaining all of the life that depends on it.

 

Cynthia Aguilar

West Tisbury