It’s really hard being a poor American and a nature lover living in a way that doesn’t contribute to the collective footprint on the environment of the world. You can be a vegan and you can walk everywhere and live in a cardboard box and you’re still playing into the industrialized global destruction of the planet. Especially if you’re poor. Being rich doesn’t help either. Americans walk on the backs of somebody somewhere everyday. If you drink a coke you’re supporting illegal child labor. If you use an iPhone you’re supporting crooked mining companies in Africa and horrid labor practices in China so you can Snap chat at a greater speed. That shrimp you like is possibly processed in a warehouse using slave labor. Many American companies have factories in countries with few regulations where they pollute and pay slave wages. In return for the subjugation of the worlds poor and the lands they live in we get to have neat shiny objects and great snack foods.
My guilt that I feel for my consumerism is mainly around the deforestation that is caused by the cheap foods and drinks I consume everyday. Fucking palm oil and those poor starving orangutans crawling out of acres of tree stumps down to the logging roads, they’re on my mind every time I eat shit food or use cheap detergent. I buy snacks to put in my pack for my hikes, and American snacks that are processed and packaged are horrible things. The wrappings alone probably give us health problems and then they’re full of preservatives, but the fucking palm oil from Borneo is just a nightmare situation for appeasing that sweet tooth on a hike. That palm oil is in most of the snacks and sweet things you eat and many other household items.
I was sitting by a pond today lined with willow trees. Beavers love young willow trees, as they eat the bark. Willow trees also have a chemical called salicin. Salicin kills pain and reduces fever and luckily is produced in labs to make aspirin. So, I was looking at these willow trees and thinking how horrible it would be if they were harvested for something somebody needed in some foreign land and all the animals that relied on them perished as a result. It’s a horrible apocalyptic image that is a reality for people in Borneo everyday so that I can eat Doritos with my gas station hot dog or have my Ramen noodles. Also, the share holders get to be fat cats by providing us with cheap palm oil laced foods. The one percent play a huge part in fucking us all over. From the fat fuck Cheetos addict to the orphaned starving orangutan, they’re both getting screwed for the bottom line. It’s all about profits. As the poverty stricken, broken down, nearing middle age American nature lover with few choices for comfort, I can only suck on my guilt and sweet snacks. I can also write and hope somebody else feels shitty enough to eat less snacks tomorrow when they get bored or hungry or sad and eat some disgusting food made in a factory powered on the blood of the world.
Getting too wordy. Have empathy for life and try to make a smaller footprint.