I had a debate this afternoon with an individual who was extremely anti-Big Oil. The topic started off with something else and would end up with her ranting about the evils of Big Oil. Pausing long enough to reduce her blood pressure down from the 4 digit marks, she asked how I felt about them. Never really thought of that question before but my answer was this: “I neither like nor dislike them. What I am is grateful for them for now.”
When I lived in the frigid weather of the Northeast, I was grateful that I had warmth. Here in Florida, I am grateful that we have AC to counter the blistering heat. I am thankful that I have a car to travel to work to support my family over the years and to do enjoyable events and classes which add Life to my Life. Much of this is due to “Big Oil.”
Yes, I am certainly aware and appalled at the environments damage they have done, but upon closer look, who are “they?” In addition to the companies we all know by name, “they” are you and me. I have contributed to said damage by using oil and continue to. No one gets a free pass on this one. I do look forward to the day when the age of fossil fuels have ended and environmentally friendly, less expensive sources of fuel are readily available and are at least as equally effective.
I am also reminded of 2 important lessons:
1. Hatred of anything, group, person, company or ______(add your favorite) does nothing but empower them. Our energy is simply flowing to them like Niagara Falls. Big Oil is not where I want my energy to flow. Clean energy is, so as much as possible, this is where I focus my energy.
2. Big anything is an easy target. They are faceless and are often the merciless targets of politicians and the media as they are so easy to manipulate emotionally. Some perhaps are most deserving of this barrage. Others are not. Still others. . . we have no idea but simply assume. One of the reasons Big Anything is a Big Target is jealousy. How many times do we hear, “They are ranking in millions . . . how can that be?”
How can that be? Look around and see how many people are recycling. In my neighborhood, we are one of about 10% of households who do. How many have reduced travel, carpool, bike or walk to work? Are you driving an electric car or SUV? How many are purchasing green products? It has been my experience that the same percentage — 10% — is found across the board.
If we want to make real changes, “they” needs to be us. Recycle the “Do as I say, not as I do” and replace it with simply,
I am doing.
Now it is your turn.