To Save Gaia From Globull Warming, What We Need Are…..More Artists!

Because actually going out and living a “carbon neutral” lifestyle, giving up the trappings of a modern society, riding a bike 15 miles to work, giving up meat, refusing to use your ice maker, turning the thermostat up to 85 in the summer and down to 55 in the winter, buying solar panels for one’s house, etc and so on, is expensive and inconvenient: Calling all artists: The climate movement needs you!

Throughout history, artists have joined forces with political movements to battle injustice and demand a better and more beautiful world. Picasso’s “Guernica” captured the horrors of the German bombing of civilians in 1937. “Solidarity Forever,” “We Shall Overcome,” and “Give Peace a Chance” expressed the optimism and power of the labor, civil rights, and peace movements. Delacroix’s “Liberty Leading the People” embodied the utopian fervor of the French Revolution. Shepard Fairey’s Obama “Hope” silkscreen during the 2008 election captured America’s yearning for a more visionary politics.

Great upheavals demand great art. And now humanity faces the gravest of threats: climate change. The climate clock ticks ominously onward, but thus far we have been unable to marshal what Bill McKibben and Naomi Klein describe as the “bodies, passion, and creativity” required to avert impending economic and environmental disaster.

Well, see, there’s a big difference between what the art in the first paragraph describes and what they want in the second paragraph: people actually went out and made things happen for the art in the first. The labor, civil rights, and peace movements went out and did things, lived the lives. They didn’t expect Someone Else to get it done. They did it themselves.

But passion comes from the heart, not the head, and climate activists have largely been targeting people’s upper organ, pleading their case with statistics, policy platforms, and poll-driven messaging. Maybe it’s time to aim lower. McKibben, the founder of 350.org, is one of the few climate activists thinking seriously about the relationship between art, activism and social change. He views artists as “antibodies of the cultural bloodstream” and key to social movement vitality

So, what they want is to change the dynamics of the “spreading awareness” campaign and focus on the heart? I have an idea (which you have heard many times): the Warmists should show everyone how it is done, and live the ClimaLife. Instead, they rarely do anything in their own lives. If your boss tells you that you need to start getting to work earlier, yet he/she is always showing up 15 minutes later than what the schedule says, are you going to tend to show up early?

There are many, many more paragraphs in the article telling us how art can be a social light, how artists and movie makers are wasting their time on projects that bring great joy to people, but aren’t about social justice, and that they need to do more, but, really, for my end, they all end with the question “why aren’t you proponents walking the talk?”, so, let’s end with this

Let’s face it: As the world burns, the climate movement struggles to make its case. Climate legislation is dead in the Congress; global agreements seem less likely with each passing day. In 2008, 66 percent of Americans viewed climate change as a major threat; by March 2011, only 51 percent of the public was concerned. Millions of promised climate-reducing green jobs have not materialized.

Shocker! People tend not to follow hypocrites.

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