Inspiring and Frustrating
Just had a long talk with my eye doctor this morning about the environment, global warming, health and the government. Felt bad about holding up his other patients.. but was interesting. He said he used to work for the government and that they tend to ignore issues that they can't fix. And that it wasn't until Ralph Nadar wrote some book in the 60's that started people's mistrust of the government. And that his generation had a completely different concept about what the future would be like through shows like the Jetsons.. they sort of thought that technology would fix everything. But no one anticipated the turmoil in the middle east and other areas around the world. And that our government worries that if they reveal what they know, people will panic. I think people need to panic.
We also talked about all the extreme weather. And his theory was that before we reach environmental.. err... melt down-- the various disasters are bound to cause more socio-economic issues. Like for instance, those hit by these disasters are in poor areas. But in theory, it's the rich countries who've created most of the carbon emissions, thus causing the disasters. His fear is that these children whose families were torn apart will grow up to resent the original polluters.
We also talked about how crazy it is that the medical field isn't trained in nutrition. I'm astounded that doctors aren't taught to make the connection between your health and what you put in your mouth on a daily basis. However, his response was that many areas of nutrition haven't been researched enough. For instance, it seems that every 5 years what we're told is good for us, now doesn't help prevent cancer, etc. But at the same time, you wouldn't expect an eye doctor to see patients who have problems directly related to the environment. i.e. my eyes keep getting red since I've moved to the city which is directly related to the air pollution. He sees more patients who have cataracts due to diabetes. Type II diabetes being directly related to the amount of sugar that permeates everything we eat. And sees more people who have allergies, also directly related to the CO2 that affects how much pollan is in the air. Which gets me on another tangent related to food-- as stated in the Omnivore's Dilemma that while fast or processed food may be cheap, it's financial impact on our health and the environment far exceeds it's face value.
It was inspiring to know that not everyone is living in the cloud- people are questioning the government and societal norms at every age. For a while now, I've been seeking this type of discourse. I don't know if it's who I hang out with or what- but it seems like it's almost rude to delve into deep debates about religion, politics, the environment, etc. on a Friday or Saturday night. Potentially a huge generalization but people have this attitude that they've spent 40+ hours at work and now all they want to do is get wasted or have a light hearted conversation. Of course most people's jobs tend to be some what repetitive. While you're using critical thinking skills, it's unlikely what you're doing is so taxing that you can't engage in interesting discourse.
And on that note, it's nap time before my friend's wedding. I fell off the wagon and just had cooked, factory farmed chicken. As much as I want to go green, it sure is hard to do in the suburbs.