Friday, November 11, 2011

An Open Letter

Dear Fellow Worldizens Who Occupy the Third Rock from the Sun,

Many of you have often asked me what it’s like being the seven billionth person born on this planet and my usual response is, not any different than I suppose it was being the six billionth. Ofcourse, if we’re comparing with the seven thousandth person, and you’re holding a gun to my head, I’d say there are a few things that are different.

Take for example, the idea of space. No, not the outer space kind of space, just the ‘let me move my arms and not hit someone in the face’ kind of space. So maybe I’m exaggerating, but there are one-room houses where seventeen people live. Honestly, if the whole idea was to cover the face of the planet with people (why that would be the goal for any species remains a mystery, but I’m sure you’ll explain it), I would have gone with spreading out the number we already have. I would NOT have waited to bring me into the picture. But then, what do I know? I just got here.

Of course, I’m sure you guys have figured out the optimum way of life over the last millions of years you have been around and have come to the inescapable conclusion that the more of us there are, the better it is. It’s probably because we have the most ecological lifestyles in the world or even that our intra-species relationships are more harmonious and loving than any other out there. Divorce, genocide, torture.. yep, we are clearly setting an example for every other species out there, right? In the same vein, I’m also pretty sure you’ve figured out why we don’t really need those pesky trees and all those animals, and how it’s better for all concerned to instead find them on our walls, in our soups or in our vehicles.

Jokes aside, I’m pretty sure I’ll like it here. With the removal of those acres of green trees, I do have space where I can build my brick and concrete highrise to protect me from the animals we have slaughtered and the weather that we have changed. I mean, I get it. Who wouldn’t want extreme climate fluctuations as part of their daily lives? They do say ‘may you be born in interesting times’, right? And, if it gets too hot or too cold, we have central airconditioning. There is the little matter of the water crisis, energy crisis, pollution crisis, economic crisis, political crises, etc that may make central air conditioning impossible to sustain, but I’m sure you also have a plan for that.

One thing that bothers me is this: with half the population unemployed, and businesses becoming increasingly hard to sustain given our depleting natural resources and rising poverty, I’m wondering why you didn’t stop at three billion or even three million people. It looks like that number would have managed to do all the things well that seven billion of us are finding increasingly hard to do.

I hope you don’t consider me impertinent about asking these questions. It’s just that over the next few decades, while I forage for food, burn the huge amounts of paper you called currency to get some heat and deal with tsunami-sized natural disasters, I don’t want to let you down in this Age of Aquarius of Healing and Fulfilling ones’ Destiny. In short, I do want you to know that I’m finally doing everything I was born to do, in this future you worked so hard to achieve.

Warmest Regards,

Human Occupant # 7000,000,000 on Earth

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