0249 – Well-informed futility?

I learned a new phrase yesterday: well-informed futility. It’s good to be able to put words onto a concept that’s long haunted our world.

“In the absence of federal policies that are protective of child development and the ecology of the planet on which our children’s lives depend, we serve as our own regulatory agencies and departments of interior…. Thoughtful but overwhelmed parents correctly perceive a disconnect between the enormity of the problem and the ability of individual acts of vigilance and self-sacrifice to fix it. Environmental awareness without corresponding political changes leads to paralyzing despair….We feel helpless in our knowledge, and we’re not sure we want any more knowledge. You could call this well-informed futility syndrome. And soon enough, we are retreating into silent resignation rather than standing up for abolition now.” (from Raising Elijah)

This quote resonated well within me. I believe most of us are relatively well-informed of the grim situation that we face. At times, it seems so overwhelming and hopeless that we don’t know what to do. We then indeed retreat into silent resignation.

I’m writing this to tell you that there is hope. There is the potential to rectify our past wrongs. There is a future for us and for our children.

You wonder if your individual efforts matter. And I say remember ‘The Value of One, the Power of All’. Recycling one soup can, as opposed to tossing it to the landfill, saves enough energy to power a laptop for almost two hours. Recycling a four-feet stack of newspaper can save one whole tree. Every single action that we take matters.

I don’t wanna make this another one of those long preaches on why you should care about the environment, so here’s where I want to end:

I have one challenge for you: We are strong. We are strong enough to not silently sliding into futility. We are strong enough to  work together. Forget the statistics. Forget the harsh words. Forget the critics. Forget the nags. Remember one thing: remember that you matter. We all matter. Let’s start caring, because there is hope.


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