Our speciesism—our belief that the value of humanity surpassingly transcends the value of all other species—has its roots in our individual egoism. Those of us who have the power to change this apparently ineluctable trajectory toward the death of the biosphere are precisely the ones who profit from it most. We care enough to say we care, but not enough to act. We are actually doing quite well. Others, both now and even more so in the future, will have to reap what we sow.
There is reason for great pessimism. Turning the tide on our ceaseless sprawl, resource consumption and degradation of the environment seems an impossible task. There seem to be no genuine levers, political or social, upon which we can grasp to break this incredible momentum toward the abyss. And indeed, this too seems perfectly natural; isn’t this the way of all life? Do not all lifeforms similarly expand and flourish until another checks their path or their resources run dry? Though the belief that the arctic dwelling lemmings commit mass-suicide in times of over population has been largely debunked, still the mass migrations that lead to their inexplicable leaping from cliffs are consequent to their inability to curb their own reproductive success. For that they need predators like stoats, foxes and raptors, but their numbers frequently do not meet the demand. Might it not be that the great success of the human species will require a similar external break? Can only an environmental apocalypse curb the human “success”?

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