Zombies and Climate Change
If you mention “zombies” to people, the common reaction is “Zombies? What’s all this stuff about zombies? It’s everywhere!”
George Romero is known as the father of zombie movies. Unknown to most people, zombie movies weren’t really about zombies. He used low art (a horror film) to explore highly relevant social issues. Zombies weren’t fast because their speed wasn’t the problem, their danger was their unavoidable, mounting threat… you can run, but you can’t hide.
Back in the day, the issues were social order, consumerism, the distribution of resources… you know, light topics.
Flash forward to today and the zombie phenomenon is more popular than ever with books, more movies, graphic novels, and one of the most popular cable television programs ever.
The conflict in the zombie dramas is not between us and the zombies, it is in how we treat each other. Do we act in the interest of the other guy? Do we hunker down in the mall with enough clothing, jewelry, and junk food to last for months? We’ll be ok for a while, but eventually we go out or the out comes in.
Or, do we revert to a more primitive time and look to our own self-interests by hording resources and dominating the weak?
The characters fight to survive each other and to protect their interests while ignoring the looming zombie apocalypse. Under emotional stress, we revert to our primitive instincts. How they (really us) react is a combination of personal ethics, ambition, and group identity.
Like the slow moving flood of zombies, there is an inevitability to climate change.
Whether or not you agree to the details of the how, it is happening. Those that deny it are mostly responding in a heartfelt manner to support an ideology. I don’t agree with them, but I understand the sources of their passions.
The science shows that the steps we take now will affect how bad it will be.
So, do we ignore it and hunker down in the mall surrounded by nice stuff?
Do we ignore the plight of others so that we can each serve our own self-interests and survival?
Do we take the steps now to contain the slow moving zombie climate that will change our planet in ways we cannot imagine now?
Or finally, do we put aside our impassioned debates and face the inevitable threat?
We must all act together. It is the policies and actions we take now that determine if our grandchildren will be able to control their own destinies or if they are forced to choose sides in a fight for resources.
Alice won’t be around to help.