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Oct 31 2008
the future of the human race

To me, it seems that the biggest ethical question we face today is cutting back on our decadent lifestyles so that there is a future for humans on this planet. We're using up resources much faster than they can be replaced, and since there is a limited amount of these resources available, we obviously can't do that forever. IMHO, I think we could keep going like we're going for the rest of the lifetime of anyone alive today...but not much longer than that. And, unless we start turning it around real soon, I think we could really mess things up enough that there will be no way to avoid a massive "die-off" in which will nearly if not entirely lead to the extinction of the human race.That really makes this an ethical question since our incentive to start cutting back would be for other people, not for ourselves.

This might tie into the theme of this website in a couple of ways. Religious people may believe that humans don't have to worry about such things because they think that God is making sure we don't make the planet completely uninhabitable. Or, at the opposite extreme, some think that God will be killing everyone off shortly anyway. Either way, they might disagree with my feeling that we really NEED to think about making sure there is a future for humanity because it is completely up to us.

Of course, I know that there are also now religious environmentalists out there ("conserving God's creation"), and I'm glad to see that. There are, I'm sure, also other atheists who are not concerned about these sorts of issues.

Anyway, I'm not sure exactly what the point of this post is, but I'm hoping to start a conversation with y'all about it. How many people do you think there are in each of these different "camps"? Is there anyone reading this who is an atheist but not concerned about environmental issues? (If so, I'd just like to hear from you so that I can better understand what you're thinking...and I'd like a chance to try to change your mind 'cause I think you're making a big mistake!) And, do we really need to worry about the religious non-environmentalists or can we just solve this problem between those of us (religious and non-religious) who think it needs solving?

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