What it means to be human

As humans, we rarely stop to take the time and think about important issues.
People seem to spend more time focusing on what filter to use for their next selfie, and it’s increasingly rare for people to stop and think about things that matter.

Graphic by Lena Yang
Graphic by Lena Yang

This has never been more apparent than when we log into social media sites such as Facebook, where a person is more likely to find posts about insignificant things than they are to find about important things.

That said, you could imagine my surprise when I logged on to Facebook and found a video that I can confidently say has changed the way I perceive humanity and the world.

Posted to YouTube by Carlos Chavira, the video entitled “Planet Earth Is You” is a hauntingly beautiful and honest talk about how humanity is destroying our planet piece by piece, all for the sake of ambition and self-fulfillment.

Chavira discusses how we have been the jailers and murderers of animals, and yet they constantly forgive us, only for us to betray them and continue on the same destructive path.

Not only do we still capture and kill them in captivity, but we are also destroying their habitats and homes through deforestation and global warming — again, all for the sake of human progress.

What Chavira says is unfortunately true. Humans are guests on this earth, and earth has been an incredible host to our species.

But we treat it and its other inhabitants like they are expendable. We act like there is a plan B, or rather, a planet B.

We have it in our heads that we have to keep moving forward, that we must make progress for the sake of humanity’s advancement and continued existence.

But the fact of the matter is that we will not continue to exist if we keep taking advantage of the earth and destroying it so we can have bigger cities or more oil for our cars.

What happens when we run out of ground to build on, or when all of the animals go extinct because we are destroying their homes and habitats?

Earth will not remain complacent for long, and while it may be sick and dying, it will begin to fight back.

We were given the capacity to speak, to think and to act, but we are using those abilities for all the wrong reasons.

It is high time humans took the talents they have been afforded and used them to maintain the planet and its other inhabitants, otherwise hope for both humanity and the Earth itself will be lost forever.

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