The problem is that apparently, we don’t realise that what we’re doing is almost futile; they’re making vain attempts at getting the world into order and taking real decisive action on the climate and ecological crises.
We could spend a whole decade demanding Climate Justice, in fact, we could spend a lifetime giving a voice to our fragile planet, but politicians still wouldn’t listen. Have you ever wondered why? Well, it all boils down to the simple fact that politicians are not climate-concerned. In other words, they don’t care about the climate crisis or stopping global warming. That’s because they are too busy playing politics all day, to the point at which they just cannot even function without doing so, because they have become became addicted to it.
Here’s an analogy…
Metaphorically speaking, politicians are like that 10-year-old boy who just plays video games all day long, and just can’t stop playing. Now we, young people, are like the mother of that boy, who tells him to stop playing and to go and do his household chores, for example taking the rubbish out or washing the dishes. That boy, most likely, will not just stop playing video games in order to go and do his chores, right? So, what does he do instead? In order not to immediately make his mother angry, he tries to appease or stall her, so he says “OK, mum, I’m on it, right now” and his mother leaves the room. An hour passes and the boy is still playing video games…
Then, his mother comes in and starts shouting: “You have failed me”, she protests. And so the boy says “OK, mum, I will do it, I just have to finish this level”.
This is exactly the same as politicians saying ‘economic growth’ or ‘money and subsidies for fossil fuels’. These ‘levels’ are exactly those things; they’re false promises. So the story goes on and on, with the mother giving the boy a tough time while she rebukes him with her withering glare as the boy, not caring, continues saying “OK, mum, I will, just finish this level or beat this boss villain and then I will do it”…
The final result is this:
- the boy was able to continue playing in peace without any disturbance from his mother, as she is incessantly insisted that he get up to do his mandatory chores;
- the mother is exhausted and totally consumed, due to the time and energy constantly spent on telling the boy to get up and do his chores;
- meanwhile, the rubbish remains in the house and the dishes are left undone!
But, wait…there’s more.
The boy’s best friend comes over for a sleepover or a party or just to hang out, and he figures out that his friend’s mother is mad at his friend because his friend didn’t do his chores… So, in order to get into his friend’s mother’s good books and be seen as a good friend in her eyes, what does he do? He simply urges his friend to do his chores before starting to play.
The boy refuses, then the friend tells him that if he doesn’t listen and answer his mother’s requests, then he would not play with him, effectively threatening the boy by ruining his plans and leaving him all alone.
So, the boy, for the sake of playing with his friend, gets up (finally, what an ordeal!) and does his chores, and his friend may even be kind and benevolent and help the boy out. Thus, the boy does his chores, but, the crucial thing to notice here is that he doesn’t do it because his mother ‘protested’ and said so. He does them because otherwise, his plan to play with his best friend would fall through.
This is exactly what’s happening right now, all around the world…
We, just like the boy’s mother, are trying to convince or persuade our governments to act on climate, to take the issue seriously, and not waste any more time, while world leaders are constantly procrastinating, deflecting, diverting our attention to the fact that they’re saying “Ok, yes we need to act, now”.
What we are missing is someone acting like the boy’s best friend. Someone who is an insider in politics, someone whom politicians will listen to and follow, someone unlike the mother in the story, who represents our voice, but the voice of the friend. Someone whom, if politicians won’t listen, he would do something they wouldn’t like (like when the boy’s friend threatened or admonished him that he would not play with him for the day).
That kind of person is not on the world stage right now.
If that person even exists, they would be the missing link in the disconnected chain to a sustainable future. A chain that would save the future of mankind and all species, by saving the entire planet.
Youssuf Sabek, the author, is an Egyptian blogger, writer, social media activist, and student who is dedicating his life to serving mankind and saving humanity from extinction.