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Victims of our habits

Stories and News No. 1292

The french oil company TotalEnergies and the chinese China National Offshore Oil Corporation are the main financiers of the controversial East African oil pipeline, which according to recent studies will produce huge quantities of carbon dioxide, 379 million tons of pollution from global warming, or more than 25 times the combined annual emissions of nations Uganda and Tanzania, where the pipeline will be working. At the same time, the oil will be exported and sold abroad as usual. All this confirms what Martin Griffiths, head of the humanitarian section of the United Nations, claims regarding the damage suffered by African populations such as Somalia, victims of our habits, while most of the 100 billion promised in 2009 by rich countries to counteract the climate change has disappeared into the many pockets, sleeves and purses of the various intermediary parties responsible for the funding delivery.

Once upon a time there was “us”. Or even “those”, “the others”, “you” choose.
You do, since you can, while we could, they who certainly cannot, and so on, declining pronouns and verbs according to the degree of luck at birth.
Nevertheless, for narrative reasons we simplify the subject in “us” or “we”.
We all live a little in the same way, let's face it. What we aspire to in the great recognizable world of “acting in spite of the consequences” is almost identical.
In the past it was enough to turn on the TV and especially by observing the advertisements, when the family or even the single average citizen protagonist of the commercial came on the scene, it was very clear what the dream was: the one-storey house or even two with a well-kept lawn on front, with the driveway to the garage next door and the hammock at the back. Maybe even the swimming pool, but protected by a fence and a faithful dog who over the years counted more and more as a guard than a friend.
Over time, with more or less technological updates, the coveted scenario hasn't changed that much. And do you know what has remained unchanged? Our idiosyncrasy to reflect even for a second on who suffers our actions, from the simplest and most everyday, to the most planned and perfected ones.
As proof of this, starting in no particular order from the banalities, since we were children we walk, run or even remain motionless on the spot ignoring, crushing or even killing everything, from ants to any type of insect, from blades of grass to flowers and each plant, up to the footprints left by those who preceded us, which are also there to warn us to not repeat the journey or retrace our steps.
Speaking of flowers, we grab and tear without any consideration for the part that remains stumped behind us with a sort of question mark on the head asking: why are you doing this? What have we done wrong to you? And, above all, where are you running so fast with no time to look back?
Simple to answer: towards the dream cottage above, it is obvious.
In the meantime, we voraciously consume the necessary as the superfluous without  any solution of reasonableness, more than continuity, as if chewing stuff between the teeth and sliding it down the esophagus to digest it, and then draw some form of nourishment or poisoning from it, has become an exercise for its own sake. Like a kind of obsessive tic with the illusion of being able to quell ancestral anxieties.
However, since what we are neglecting, crushing or even murdering, grabbing, cutting off and daily devouring are human beings, most of the time women and children, still managing to obtain the keys to the infamous house, how is it possible to close the door and forget that? Something must be done to remedy this unacceptable memory problem, if not awareness. Perhaps the sidewalks and streets of our cities should be transformed into monitors or mirrors through which to observe the faces of the victims of our habits. In order to be clear at all times over the lives of who we are going through to get to the end of the rainbow...

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