The Future Survival of Every Species on this Planet – including our own – depends on it
“The fact is that no species has ever had such wholesale control over everything on earth, living or dead, as we now have. That lies upon us, whether we like it or not, an awesome responsibility. In our hands now lies not only our own future, but that of all other living creatures with whom we share the earth.”
― British broadcaster and natural historian David Attenborough
A News Commentary by Niagara At Large reporter and publisher Doug Draper
Posted August 14th, 2019 on Niagara At Large
Donald Trump has a hell of a lot of nerve pointing his fat little fingers at brown people and calling them “rapists.”
Trump should look in the mirror and ask the question; “Mirror, mirror on the wall, who is the biggest rapist of all?”
The orange-hair monster would probably not like the answer because he mirror would be reflecting those little fingers back at him.
And this is not just about the growing list of women who have accused Trump of groping or raping them. This is about the biggest rape of all on a victim that we all need to nurture and protect to survive on this planet.
That victim is Mother Nature, which Trump has proven time and time again that he could care less about going back to the earliest days of his nightmare presidency when he moved unilateral decision to pull out of a Paris Climate Accord that less than a year earlier – in 2016 – his country signed following negotiations with more than 190 other signature nations around the world.
Like a horde of barbarians, charging through the countryside, pillaging and burning down every village in their path, Trump and his fellow swamp creatures have, among many other things, ripped the heart and soul and science prowess out of a once world-class U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; he has weakened the country’s Clean air and Water Acts; opened the door to mining and oil drilling in natural heritage parks, including the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, and offshore marine sanctuaries; and the lowering of emission standards for trucks and cars – all at the behest of the notorious, billionaire Koch brothers and others in the oil, gas, coal and mining industries that so obviously make short-term money grabs a priority over the future of this planet for all those who follow.
And now we learn that Trump is aiming his ongoing war on our planet environment at one of his country’s and the world’s seminal pieces of environmental protection legislation over the past 50 years – a U.S. Endangered Species Act that is so critical to preserving what is left of the biodiversity on this earth and the habitat so vital to the health and welfare and survival of all of us.
Trump and his fellow swamp creatures, including his Secretary of Interior David Bernhardt, a long-time oil industry lobbyist who is now supposed to be a steward for America’s precious nature reserves, are now working to weaken the wildlife protections in this ground-breaking legislation that, believed it or not, was signed with much fanfare in 1973 by former U.S. President Richard Nixon, a Republican with an otherwise dubious record, but who also brought the Environmental Protection Agency Trump is gutting now into existence.
According to an August 12th story in The New York Times, “the changes (to the Endangered Species Act that Trump and company are now moving to make) could clear the way for new mining, oil and gas drilling, and development in areas where protected species live.
“The new rules will make it harder to consider the effects of climate change on wildlife when deciding whether a given species warrants protection,” the Times story continues. “They would most likely shrink critical habitats and, for the first time, allow economic factors to be taken into account when making determinations.”
Reaction to Trump’s assault on this Act has been coming fast and furious from caring voices around the world, including from many in his own country outside of what is left of a now morally bankrupt Republican Party.
“Our precious wildlife and ecosystems are in critical danger. By rolling back the Endangered Species Act the Trump Administration would be putting a nail in our coffin – all for the sake of boosting the profits of those putting these species at risk in the first place,” California Attorney General Xavier Becerra said in a press release. “We’re ready to fight to preserve this important law – the species with whom we share this planet, and depend on, deserve no less.”
“Washington State Governor Jay Inslee, who is now running as a voice for climate action in the Democratic presidential primaries, responded this way – “Weakening the Endangered Species Act is all about making it easier to mine for coal and drill for oil. …So this isn’t just bad for the bald eagle or the grizzly bear — it’s bad for our kids and their health.”
Bad for our kids and their health, indeed!
This latest move, along with all of Trump’s other assaults on environmental protections, constitutes nothing less than an all-out war on our planet and our children’s future. And it isn’t just being waged south of the Canada/U.S. border.
Here in Ontario, where we have our own five-and-dime Donald Trump in the name of Doug Ford, the Ford government is also moving to change and weaken endangered species rules here to make it easier for its friends and supporters in the development industry to pave over ever more of what is left of our province’s natural heritage.
Weakening Ontario’s endangered species protections is just one of the shots Ford is taking at environmental and planning rules to realize the province he has made to these same friends and supporters to make the province ‘Open for Business,’ which is code for getting environmental safeguards out of their way when they are looking at paving over lands known to have significant natural heritage value.
In total, what we are clearly facing at a time of climate emergency is a full-frontal attack by the likes of Trump and others on 21st century safeguards and solutions to challenges experts around the world are warning us we don’t have much time left to address before we cross a point of no return and it is too late for us and future generations.
In a recent interview, Richard Engel, a senior foreign correspondent for NBC, said he had just come back from the Arctic where residual warmth from the killer heat wave that has been plaguing Europe this summer was causing record high temperatures that were literally melting the ice beneath his feet.
We can’t afford any more blocking and back-sliding from dangerous nuts like Trump and Ford who pretend to Pied Piper us back to an age of cheaper gas and suburban sprawl so that the worst of the worst of their “open for business” pals can wrap their talons around what’s is left of our natural heritage and let it rip.
The people of the world can’t stand for any more of this. These reckless rascals have declared war on the environment, and we have to treat it like a war and fight back.
We have a federal election in Canada this coming October and next year there is what I can only describe as a do-or-die federal election in the United States.
Those elections are a chance for those of us who care about the future of the planet, including younger people who have been notorious in the past for not going to the polls, to make environmental protection a top priority and to vote as if our future depends on it – because it does.
To read a recent story in The New York Times about the Trump administration’s move to weaken the U.S. Endangered Species Act, click on – https://www.nytimes.com/2019/08/12/climate/endangered-species-act-changes.html
For recent news commentary Niagara At Large posted on the Ontario Ford government’s plans to weaken the protection rules for endangered species in this province, click on – https://niagaraatlarge.com/2019/04/19/ford-government-moving-to-wave-ontarios-endangered-species-protection-laws-for-developers/ .
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“A politician thinks of the next election. a leader thinks of the next generation.” – Bernie Sanders