Monday, November 26, 2007

Saving the planet, one death at a time

I've been having trouble coming up with an adequate response to this bit of eco-stupidity, which the worthy 'Fly brought to my attention. Fortunately, Lileks is able to express at least one aspect of my revulsion with it:
Disaster! She had the awful thing put away, and now she and her husband enjoy hiking and vacations . . . in other countries, accessed via jets. But: “We feel we can have one long-haul flight a year, as we are vegan and childless.” She expresses frustration that other people are unable to accept her decision. I suspect she means “my mum” by “other people,” and I suspect she confuses “acceptance” with “full-throated endorsement."

Of course I accept these people’s decisions not to have children. What am I supposed to do, break into their homes, duct-tape them together into the double-backed beast and play whacka-chicka 70s porn soundtracks until they’re in the mood? But “acceptance” is part of the usual recipe: first we must tolerate, which no decent person should have any problem doing. Then we are asked to accept, which for most means slump-shouldered acquiescence. Eventually it’s not the norm, but it’s standing alongside it on stage, nudging its way into the spotlight.

Be it understood, I don't care if this woman sterilizes herself. Heck, from a Planned-Parenthood-eugenics perspective, it might be for the best. What I have a problem with is the idea that abortion is the way to "save the planet."

If the trend catches on, eventually the commandment will be "Thou shalt not suffer a child to live." Instead of merely being a cynical cash cow for eugenicists, the Sacrament of Abortion might grow to be treated as exactly that. Currently, it's only treated as an unqualified good by the most loathesome uterofascists, while politicians who might otherwise disapprove of it still bow at its altar to keep the votes coming. But if the Global Warming Cult gets a strong foothold, mandatory (or at least socially-demanded) abortion will follow behind. Realistically, I don't expect anything that drastic, but it's a direction I don't want to see our culture even begin to lean toward.

The other concern is a little more behind-the-scenes - the idea that it should always be somebody else, somebody worthless, who has to be sacrificed for the common good. It's always couched in the highest of motives - in this case, the pursuit of a healthy environment - but the bottom line is twofold: (a) it's going to take some suffering, and (b) it's not going to be me that does it. Logically, the most effective means of lessening her "carbon footprint" would be for Toni to off herself. But that never crosses her mind. After all, what good is a healthy environment if I'm not there to enjoy it? Me, me, me.

So it can't be Toni or her sisters-in-folly who make that ultimate sacrifice. And it can't be her husband (or boyfriend or whatever); walking and hiking and going away for weekends aren't any fun alone. Still, somebody has to be eliminated, or carbon will batter the ecosystem with footprints like kids playing on the best sledding hill in town. Logically, it has to be the person who is of no use to her, either financially or socially or emotionally. Coincidentally, that's also the only person she can get rid of without legal repercussions; the law frowns on murdering strangers, but subsidizes this kind of eugenics. It enables her to feel like she's doing the earth some good (infinitesimal in fact, but impressive to the ego) without actually compromising her lifestyle. This is the kind of thinking that motivated the ancients to sacrifice their children to vengeful deities, that caused Germans to look away when their Jewish neighbors disappeared, that allows soi-disant men to slink away and abandon fourteen women to their deaths. It's cowardice and selfishness, combined with a smug self-righteous conviction that turns contemptible behavior into a badge of superiority. I can muster more respect for an Islamofascist suicide bomber than for a woman who kills the helpless to keep her lifestyle uncluttered, then has the nauseating gall to expect praise for her actions.

Personally, I'd exchange Toni in a heartbeat for the baby she had killed. At least that was an unknown quantity. With Toni, we know what sort of people we're dealing with, and it's not encouraging for the future.

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