A young boy is being told by his mother the things he needs to get done before he can go and play with his friends.There are 7 chores he must do and then he can go play.
The boy finishes his chores and tells his mother he is done. When she goes to check on the completed jobs, she finds that only 3 out of the seven are completed. The only three completed are chores directly related to the boys own wellness and cleanliness of his own space.
Before the boy darts outside to join his friends, his mother pulls him back inside and reminds him that all the chores must get done, not just the ones he thinks are important.
The lesson of this young boy is one that many people still must learn. You cannot just focus on certain aspects of reality, but inside acknowledge evrything around you, no matter how in direct or direct it may be to your own reality.
I realized this idea was an issue that human society may be facing when I read the blog post by Robin Hanson in Overcoming Bias.
The blog dicsussed the possible explosion of an extremely aggressive volcano in Yellowstone National Park that could result in the extinction of the nations population through a dust cloud that will remain on earths surface for 5-10 years blocking sunlight.
Surprisingly I have learned about this volcano once before in an 8th grade science class, but only now am I feeling the true realisticness of it all.
Considering it is such a serious matter, I wondered why more people aren’t concerned or discussing outcomes or solutions to the explosion. Why are we only focusing on things in life that are more tangible, or directly connected to us, and not on everything surrounding us in reality such as this volcano.
Let’s turn the table and make the threat of a volcano become a nuclear war threat, one that endangers the human population of an entire country. The war threat, something that is visually demonstrated in live time its real threat to our health, would be addressed and discussed by many. Actions would be taken immediately toward prevention and allies would join forces to gain heightened strength and knowledge. The same cannot be said for the volcano as half as many people don’t know about its eminent threat to their lives as there should be. I do understand that there is not much that can be done, but preparing yourself for possible death in the near future would be the least you could do. But it’s almost like it has been put on the backburner of society concerns because it does not claim the elemet of visual reality like a nuclear attack would. Even though latest reports claim the volcano has been more active in past months.
Just like the little boy who only wants to do they chores pertaining to him directly, I feel that the population doesn’t think much in term of preparation or solutions to the explosion, but instead focuses on other issues that have more of a visual reality. Yes, I understand there is not much that can be done, and death is inevitable, but why don’t we at least talk about this in the open? Why do we only care about tangible reality, and not all reality?
Hanson, R. (2017, September 14). Prepare for Nuclear Winter. Retrieved September 25, 2017, from http://www.overcomingbias.com/2017/09/prepare-for-nuclear-winter.html