Tuesday, April 25, 2017

I will be speaking at 10 AM about the Citizen's Climate Lobby and at 2:30 PM on ecopsychology in the board room of the school.

Escuela Verde
3628 W. Pierce St.
Milwaukee, WI 
*Overflow parking behind school on Canal St. 
(Access Canal St. at 25th St. just Westof Potawatomi Casino.  Use “marked” foot bridge to cross the Menomonee river to pierce St.)
Live Music
Activities for Kids
Food Available
Panel Discussions
And FUN!
April 29, 2017

10AM to 4PM

Friday, January 6, 2017

The unabridged talk I gave at this event follows the event description.  Three speakers after me went into details about the Trump cabinet.

Day Against Denial
Monday, January 9, 5:30 pm

hosted by the Water Protectors of Milwaukee and 350 Milwaukee
517 E. Wisconsin, the Federal Building, Ron Johnson's office

Please join us in Milwaukee Monday, January 9, at the Federal building to tell Senator Johnson to reject Trump’s anti-climate Cabinet picks.
Climate activists in cities all across the country will be coming together in our Day Against Denial, urging our senators to oppose Trump’s dangerous Cabinet nominations. These nominees threaten to reverse climate treaties, roll back EPA protections, and promote dirty fuels at the expense of a clean energy future.  Facebook Event

Thank you all for coming today to show your support for the environment. As a budding entomologist in 1962 I was deeply moved by Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring. I didn’t want to be one of those people who sprayed DDT that was killing the songbirds and leaving us with a silent spring. So I got my PhD from Berkeley in insect pathology, microbial control of insect pests so you don't have to use chemical pesticides. The biggest concern for our species now is not DDT but putting CO2 into the atmosphere by burning fossil fuels.

Many scientists want to call our present age the Anthropocene Era because of the profound ways humans are shaping the planet, reconstructive activities on a par with massive volcanic eruptions of the past, tectonic shifts, and a giant meteorite hitting the planet that destroyed the Age of the Dinosaurs. If we don’t abruptly curtail CO2 emissions we will be well on the way to inflicting the grapes of wrath on our planet as described in the Book of Revelation. Our species could be responsible for taking down 70% of the other species on the planet, two thirds of the existing species being insects.

When Dick Cheney was Vice President he said we should go to war with Iraq if there was a 1% chance that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. Now 97% of the real climate scientists say that humans are the main factor in the climate changes we are experiencing that will worsen for centuries to come. Why aren’t people demanding action? One reason is because the lucrative and deeply invested fossil fuel industry is engaged in a deliberate misinformation campaign to deceive the public about the human role in climate change. People like the Koch brothers, with investments in the Canadian tar sands industry, are big sponsors of the conservative ALEC, the American Legislative Exchange. A goal in ALEC is to deny the human factor in climate change by sponsoring groups like the Heartland Institute with their annual conference of deniers. The British Royal Society sent two letters to ExxonMobil in 2006 chastising them for funding organizations attempting to convince the populace there was serious disagreement among scientists about the human factor in climate change. One ad agency hired was the same one used by Phillip Morris in 1993 to create doubt that second hand smoke can cause cancer as the Surgeon General's report in 1992 had indicated.

I am also a Jungian psychoanalyst and have written on Jung as being the prototypical ecopsychologist because in 1940 he proclaimed there had to be a paradigm shift in the West, what he called a “New Age” and an “Age of Aquarius.” This new age will undoubtably have an ecological framework because the pathologies in the environment are making us painfully aware that we are part of the environment and live in a reciprocal relationship with it.

An important aspect of ecopsychology, which studies how human perspectives, attitudes, values, and behaviors affect the environment, is that we are all capable of a much deeper connection with nature than most of us currently experience. Carl Sagan, who in 1992 as co-chair of the Joint Appeal by Science and Religion for the Environment, said that unless we can establish a sense of the sacred about the environment it will be destroyed because the forces aligned against it were too great. Now 25 years later we are all inspired by the courageous protests of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe in trying to stop the pipeline going through their sacred sites and possibly polluting the sacred waters of the mighty Missouri River.  That pipeline would carry Bakken oil from fracking in North Dakota, very dirty oil obtained by injecting explosive and carcinogenic chemicals deep into the earth.  The sand used in fracking comes from the beautiful driftless area in Wisconsin where sand mining leaves ugly scars on the landscape and potentially subjects people to silicosis lung diseases.

We can all be inspired by a vision of a Teton Sioux holy man, Black Elk, who as a 9 year-old boy in 1874 had a near death experience for 12 days. One part of his vision was of a mighty flowering tree growing in the center of a sacred circle comprised of the hoops of all the nations on the planet. His people were just one of the hoops as “children of one father and one mother”, the flowering tree. For an indigenous person, the nations would include the plant and animal nations as well, among them being the insect nation.

We have so much to learn from our Native America brothers and sisters. Out of a basic sense of love for each other and the environment as they can teach us, we must oppose the Trump deniers he wants to put in his cabinet. As the Lakota Sioux say, mitaquaye oyasin,  “we are all related”; the two-leggeds, four-leggeds, six-leggeds, standing brothers (the trees), moving brothers (water), etc.

May it be so.

Thank you.

Other essays on ecopsychology on this blog site include "Hunger Games from a Jungian, Political, and Environmental Perspective" and "A Jungian Perspective on the Most Important Issue of Our Time--Climate Change." There is also a Star Wars essay and "Guns and the American Psyche."