What we want you to do
1. When one examines the human species, it is possible to distinguish three separate stages of development. If any fundamental measure is used, three distinct stages always emerge. Regarding life, our treatment of other forms of life, they are as follows:
A. You kill everything you can, even if you do not want or need it all, and a lot goes to waste.
B. You kill only what you need (and you realize that nature looks better without human garbage littered on it).
C. Following a higher ethic, you reduce to the greatest extent possible your need to kill, and in general you seek to minimize your impact on all other life. [FFF, Humanity]
Development (and evolution) may be a measure by which to judge our entire species, but it occurs individual by individual. We encourage you - really, we implore you - to progress to the third stage.
This will require that you cast off your human chauvinism, the form that is hammered into us when we are young that humans are the paragon of creation, that we are better than all other species of life, and that we are justified in using such other life, in torturing it and killing it, even genetically-manipulating it, as we see fit.
There is an alternative view, known as biocentrism, or deep ecology, which states that all life is equal, and has the same rights, beginning with the right to live. (The associated link describes the logic underlying this view, which is also a refutation of our chauvanism.)
2. We would like you to act on this by simplifying your life and reducing your consumption as much as possible; and by participating in our first campaign below.
What we intend to do
Nature suffers the least when humans are disorganized. We must take steps to disorganize/destructure and then reorganize/restructure our species such that we finally understand that the earth comes first!
1. It is essential always to keep in mind that most environmental problems derive in one way or another from overpopulation. Of course, there are manifold reasons for overpopulation, and these need to be considered separately. However, our specific campaign in this area, which covers all such reasons, is to declare and propagate the idea that we should have a voluntary worldwide moratorium on new human births, to relieve the stresses which we create on the planet.
The problems we have caused are so severe that the Earth needs a long respite from our pressure. It needs a reduction in our numbers, not never-ending increases. Our goal, then, is to encourage a decline in the human population. This is to be accomplished by convincing people not to have babies for an entire decade, for the first decade of the new millennium. To the best of our ability and will, through using birth control, and through encouraging others to do so as well, we should limit to the greatest extent possible the number of new children that we bring into the world.
We would beseech you, therefore, always to use birth control, and in general to postpone having children until at least your late twenties. (You will be a better parent if you do this as well: more experienced as a person and therefore more able as a teacher; and with greater financial resources to care for your child.)
We would also ask you to consider a few additional arguments.
2. Dictator Watch recognizes that information is the predicate of activism, and that, regarding nature, we are surely lacking in the information which we require to be effective. We believe that at a minimum a directory should be created of all the outstanding ecological problems on the planet, including marine and atmospheric, and, to facilitate the sharing and coordination of ideas, with a listing of the groups which are active in their resolution and the tactics they are using in this process. Even more, we believe that all of the world's remaining wild places, down to a very small scale, should be identified. We cannot work to preserve nature, if we do not know where it yet survives. We would be pleased to fill a role in the design and management of such an information gathering process. Further, we envision the periodic publication of its results, in a report/website, similar to the reports from Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, and the Red List of threatened species from the World Conservation Union. We believe that if scientists can decode the genome, this certainly is possible as well. And, we would ask: which is the more important?
We intend to contact other groups which might be interested in this project, and we note that two basic methods of data collection are available. The first is top-down, working with such things as satellite surveys and national directories of parks and sanctuaries. (An example of this is the planet survey which is now being conducted by the United Nations and the World Resources Institute, using satellite photography, and which is known as the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment.) However, we prefer the second approach, which is bottom-up: the establishment of a mechanism through which anyone, including any interested group or individual, could contribute information on the ecological problems and primary habitats of which they are aware.
We also intend to design
a structure to present the information collected, such as by bioregion and prioritized
by the severity of the problems and the degree to which the habitats and their
associated species are at risk.
© Roland O. Watson 2001-3