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Map of Active Fires in the Amazon Basin – Brazil – August 27, 2019
Photo Credit: BBC News

 

Brazil’s Amazon rainforest is under attack. So far this year, she has received nearly 75,000 stab wounds, setting the targeted areas ablaze. Seventy-five thousand! Her belching smoke trails turned daylight into darkness over Brazil’s largest city, some 1,677 miles away. How many trees and the non-human lives they sustain have we humans condemned to ashes? For what?

Some arsonists are loggers, raping the forest for more wood to feed global demand. Others want easy access to the mineral wealth—gold, diamonds, iron-ore, and bauxite. Most of them are land-grabbers. They covet the land for raising more cattle and expanding soybean cultivation for animal feed production. We are trading the Amazon rainforest to satiate our taste for beef.

The Amazon Basin, regarded as the ‘Lungs of Earth,’ absorbs about 25 percent of Earth’s total carbon dioxide emissions and releases oxygen into the atmosphere. What could go wrong?

Smoke rises from forest fires – Altamira – Brazil – August 27, 2019
Photo Credit: João Laet/AFP/Getty Images

 

Brazil’s president has resisted aid from European nations to fight the fires. This is our sovereign land, he says. Aid comes with strings attached. Brazil won’t accept interference in our internal affairs from outsiders. Use the money to reforest Europe, he added. He and the French leader have exchanged personal barbs. Our American president, also a climate change denier, has remained silent.

We humans have grown used to an economic system that plunders non-human life. We exploit Earth’s mineral resources, leaving gaping wounds across the surface of our planet. When we’re done, we contaminate everywhere with our toxic waste. We treat Mother Earth with disregard and ingratitude for all that she provides to sustain our lives.

Stand with Indigenous Peoples of Brazil, the Amazon and the Climate
YouTube Video – PUBLISHED APRIL 29, 2019 – Duration 3:44 minutes

 

We humans ignore what indigenous peoples have taught us about the harmony and sacredness of Mother Earth. We ignore scientific knowledge gained over the centuries and in our own time about the interconnection and interdependence of the Web of Life. We deny what our limited human senses warn us about the degradation of our natural world and the changing climate. We silence those who sound the alarm—again and again, and yet again.

We know deep down that we must change our way of life. If not for our own sake, for our children’s sake. But we fear that we’re not up to the task. Our corporate-controlled government tells us it would cost too much to transition to a sustainable form of energy production. And we believe them. We refuse to admit that the price of inaction would be much greater. Our very existence hangs in the balance.

The Amazon is burning—consumed by our delusions of human grandeur, our disregard for human and non-human life, our failure to preserve and conserve the bounty of Mother Earth.

Mother forgive us. We know not what we do.

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