Twelve year old Anna Du reflects the hope and possibility emerging with the latest generation of planetary citizens
Twelve year old Anna Du reflects the hope and possibility emerging with the latest generation of planetary citizens
This is a video production, released in 2015, that focuses on Earth citizenship. It features many distinguished global citizens, including astronauts that have served aboard the International Space Station.
Paul Hawken, one of my most influential mentors, is an executive producer on the Planetary video. For decades, Hawken has been a noble agitator, working to build critical mass in activism to serve the one home we must all share, planet Earth.
Planetary confronts every person with the obligation he or she has to nurture and protect our Earth. It reveals the pathway we must all follow if we are to transcend the unprecedented tangle of global scale social, economic, and environmental challenges that threaten life on every continent.
Here is a link to a very compelling trailer for Planetary… http://weareplanetary.com/
This is Astronomer Carl Sagan’s achingly lovely ode to the beauty of planet Earth. Richly colored, high dynamic range video of our land, sea, and sky in all their natural splendor, and a mellifluous music track accompanies the visual feast, along with a voice track of one of the greatest citizens of the Universe, the astronomer, Carl Sagan. When I was young, he was one of my heroes. Right now, he sits on a star, flanked by Beethoven and Archimedes.
Here is a wondrous video, narrated by Carl Sagan, telling us the Earth is our only home…urging us all to rise and embrace our planetary duty..
Originally published www.ecstatictruthpdx.blogspot.com 8/14/2013
One out of three women are victims of violence, according to a study published in 2013 by the World Health Organization. That is an astonishing number, a truly astonishing number; shameful and entirely unacceptable.
In many traditional cultures, women are still treated like chattel, denied education, considered valuable only for the work they can do and the children they can birth.
Attention cavemen for whom misogyny is the norm. Get real dudes. Loving women, nurturing them, giving them the respect and the access to opportunities they are entitled to is a whole lot more satisfying than hurting them, degrading them, or causing them to suffer in any way.
WHO report highlights violence against women as a ‘global health problem of epidemic proportions’
New clinical and policy guidelines launched to guide health sector response
20 June 2013 | Geneva – Physical or sexual violence is a public health problem that affects more than one third of all women globally, according to a new report released by WHO in partnership with the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and the South African Medical Research Council.
The report, Global and regional estimates of violence against women: Prevalence and health effects of intimate partner violence and non-partner sexual violence, represents the first systematic study of global data on the prevalence of violence against women – both by partners and non-partners. Some 35% of all women will experience either intimate partner or non-partner violence. The study finds that intimate partner violence is the most common type of violence against women, affecting 30% of women worldwide.
The study highlights the need for all sectors to engage in eliminating tolerance for violence against women and better support for women who experience it. New WHO guidelines, launched with the report, aim to help countries improve their health sector’s capacity to respond to violence against women.
Impact on physical and mental health
The report details the impact of violence on the physical and mental health of women and girls. This can range from broken bones to pregnancy-related complications, mental problems and impaired social functioning.
“These findings send a powerful message that violence against women is a global health problem of epidemic proportions,” said Dr Margaret Chan, Director-General, WHO. “We also see that the world’s health systems can and must do more for women who experience violence.”
The report’s key findings on the health impacts of violence by an intimate partner were:
“This new data shows that violence against women is extremely common. We urgently need to invest in prevention to address the underlying causes of this global women’s health problem.” said Professor Charlotte Watts, from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine.
Need for better reporting and more attention to prevention
Fear of stigma prevents many women from reporting non-partner sexual violence. Other barriers to data collection include the fact that fewer countries collect this data than information about intimate partner violence, and that many surveys of this type of violence employ less sophisticated measurement approaches than those used in monitoring intimate partner violence.
“The review brings to light the lack of data on sexual violence by perpetrators other than partners, including in conflict-affected settings,” said Dr Naeemah Abrahams from the SAMRC. “We need more countries to measure sexual violence and to use the best survey instruments available.”
In spite of these obstacles, the review found that 7.2% of women globally had reported non-partner sexual violence. As a result of this violence, they were 2.3 times more likely to have alcohol disorders and 2.6 times more likely to suffer depression or anxiety – slightly more than women experiencing intimate partner violence.
The report calls for a major scaling up of global efforts to prevent all kinds of violence against women by addressing the social and cultural factors behind it.
Recommendations to the health sector
The report also emphasizes the urgent need for better care for women who have experienced violence. These women often seek health-care, without necessarily disclosing the cause of their injuries or ill-health.
“The report findings show that violence greatly increases women’s vulnerability to a range of short- and long-term health problems; it highlights the need for the health sector to take violence against women more seriously,” said Dr Claudia Garcia-Moreno of WHO. “In many cases this is because health workers simply do not know how to respond.”
New WHO clinical and policy guidelines released today aim to address this lack of knowledge. They stress the importance of training all levels of health workers to recognize when women may be at risk of partner violence and to know how to provide an appropriate response.
They also point out that some health-care settings, such as antenatal services and HIV testing, may provide opportunities to support survivors of violence, provided certain minimum requirements are met.
The report’s authors stress the importance of using these guidelines to incorporate issues of violence into the medical and nursing curricula as well as during in-service training.
WHO will begin to work with countries in South-East Asia to implement the new recommendations at the end of June. The Organization will partner with ministries of health, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and sister United Nations agencies to disseminate the guidelines, and support their adaptation and use.
Notes to Editors:
In March 2013, Dr Chan joined the UN Secretary General and the heads of other UN entities in a call for zero tolerance for violence against women at the Commission on the Status of Women in New York. During the Sixty-sixth World Health Assembly in May 2013, seven governments – Belgium, India, Mexico, Netherlands, Norway, United States of America, and Zambia – declared violence against women and girls “a major global public health, gender equality and human rights challenge, touching every country and every part of society” and proposed the issue should appear on the agenda of the Sixty-seventh World Health Assembly.
St. Matthews is an uninhabited island in the Aleutians between Alaska and Japan. In 1941, the island was lush with vegetation. There was a world war on, and the U.S. Navy decided to set up a secret communications station on St. Matthews.
A handful of sailors were stationed on the island. In order to assure there would be adequate food, in case of emergency, the Navy imported twenty-nine reindeer to St. Mathews. No reindeer had ever been there before. The entire island was covered by a four inch thick layer of lichen. It was a paradise for reindeer. After a year or so, the Navy abandoned Saint Matthews, leaving the reindeer behind. Biologists estimated the island could sustain a population of no more than 1,200 reindeer. By 1957 there were 1,350. In 1963, the number had grown to 6,000, and the island was severely degraded. Three years after that, in 1966, scientists returned and found the reindeer population had collapsed to just 42 animals. By 1980, there were no reindeer left on Saint Matthews Island.
This is a real life story… an analogy for what humans are doing to our Earth as a whole. It’s called resource overshoot. It can happen to humans as well. The best known example is the Rapa Nui culture on Easter Island off the coast of Chile.
As the Rapa Nui population expanded, they built stone statues and cut down pretty much all the trees on the island to move the statues to permanent locations. They overpopulated the island and depleted the fish and other ocean resources they depended on, until the Rapa Nui collapsed to a fraction of its former self.
These things happened.
We are now seeing the same ominous dynamics at work on a planetary scale. In 1970, the human population on Earth was about 3.5 billion. It took about 400,000 years of human history for the population to reach that size. It’s taken less than 50 years since then for human numbers to double in size to more than 7.4 billion. Every year, we’re adding another 75 million to the human population. Demographers project 10-12 billion humans on Earth by the end of this century.
We are setting ourselves up to be a St. Matthews Island parable on a planetary scale.
Every single global scale challenge we humans are dealing with at this very moment – climate change, deforestation, exhaustion of our aquifers and fresh water supplies, the collapse of our ocean resources, mass extinction of wild animal species – starts with too many humans making too many demands on our Earth’s ability to provide.
This planet is the only home we have. We have an obligation to each other to take care our precious biosphere…all of it, not just the human part.
There are too damned many of us already. If you get the parable of St. Matthews Island, you should understand that we humans have to get smart about population. The swirl of global scale problems we’ve made for ourselves is real. We must wake up and accept our planetary stewardship responsibilities. We must get past what divides us, learn to embrace our common humanity, and find a worthy pathway forward. That is the only way to keep the spaceship Earth we all depend on from breaking up and sinking under the massive weight of human overreach.
My Stanford-MAHB Dialogue with Riane Eisler
Hey, congratulations, rich guys. You’ve made more money than you could possibly ever spend. Most of you are content with that, but a few of you are not. Some of you, instead of using your money to do good deeds and champion genuine progress, are way off in the opposite direction. By that, I mean using your wealth and power to force your egocentric, self-serving worldview on the rest of us.
The truth is most billionaires – in fact most people who have more than a million or two in assets – are not part of the political hardball being played by a small group of bankers, corporatists, and billionaire psychopaths who behave like greedy thugs.
Being rich is a wonderful thing for those who are grateful for their good fortune, and are willing to give high priority to the common good. Wealth also offers those who are so blessed an opportunity to be leaders and heroes, who want a future for the Earth that is worthy of our species.
The Gates Foundation, in the name of Bill and Melinda Gates, and to a lesser extent Warren Buffet, has applied billions of dollars to some of the world’s most pressing problems. But even Bill and Warren, with all the good that they do, are playing both ends against the middle. Both are substantially invested in the continued massive consumption of coal and oil.
Journalist Naomi Klein’s book, This Changes Everything, exposes the dualistic thinking that certain high profile billionaires keep hidden behind their polished public images. They may genuinely want clean skies and a healthy biosphere, but the record shows they are not willing to give up profitable revenue streams from investments that foster our continued dependence on dirty fossil energy.
Too many wealthy people are content to sit on the political sidelines and collect their fat profits, while the economic and culturally corrosive public policy promoted by the worst of their billionaire neighbors, liker Donald Trump, make everybody that already has big money even more rich, even more separate and unequal from the rest of us.
In fact, the real political evil emerges from a very small number of wealthy people. Almost all the worst offenders are old. Almost all are politically conservative men, who very much believe in white power and privilege. They aggressively use their wealth and influence to buy politicians and manipulate the American political process, with the intent to maximize their personal interests. I don’t suppose there is much of anything that I or anyone else could say that could turn that small band of big money evildoers in a more benevolent direction. They are simply indifferent to the consequences of their pathological actions.
But there is hope for the vast majority of millionaires and billionaires, who are not hopelessly self-absorbed. Here’s my message to those wealthy folks, who recognize that they are not immune to the consequences of all the unprecedented, deeply unsettling, global scale challenges humanity must deal with. I’m talking about climate change and fossil fuel dependence. I’m talking about our reckless, abjectly corrupt, and massively dysfunctional political process. I’m talking about the human-driven shredding of the biosphere, whose finite water and living resources are being overwhelmed by the demands of seven billion plus human beings. We have made an Earth-sized mess of things. Humanity and nature are near a breaking point of unprecedented scale. Every human being has an obligation to get serious about this. Whether you’re a billionaire or an indigenous person, terrified and brutalized by illegal loggers in your forest, you have a life-and-death stake in what happens to this planet.
To all fundamentally good and decent Americans who happen to be rich, and also happen to be passive or indifferent to our broken political process, I say, time to wake up. You might think you can escape the consequences of your inaction. Don’t count on it. History has shown that when the privileged members of a society stand by passively and watch the masses sink, the rabble tend to rise up. They focus their rage and demands for retribution on people of privilege, reserving their greatest ire for those who have shown no compassion for their suffering. I’m not just talking about the oppressors. I’m talking about those who turned a blind eye to the process of oppression.
In 1794, during the French Revolution, Antoine Lavoiser, who is remembered historically for his contributions to science, was guillotined because he made his living as a tax collector for the ruling class. The same dynamic that resulted in Lavosier losing his head applies today. Being on the losing side of a life and death, cultural struggle can be a fatal mistake.
Getting on the morally correct, and very likely, the winning side of history, requires making yourself part of the solution. It is not acceptable to sit by passively while a handful of bad billionaires use their wealth to ruin our environment and tear society apart in the name of profit.
“Capitalism is the legitimate racket of the ruling class.” – Al Capone
Originally published www.ecstatictruthpdx.blogspot.com 1/13/2015