Whitman County Gazette - Serving Whitman County since 1877


By Jana Mathia
Gazette Staff 

One Thing


December 27, 2018

In the 1991 movie “City Slickers”, the old cowboy Curly tells the protagonist the secret to life is “one thing.”

“Just that one thing. You stick to that and everything else don't mean sh**,” he says. What that one thing is is up to him and, as Billy Crystal's character learns, it can change in different situations.

Most people agree global warming is a serious issue; perhaps THE issue most urgent in the world. If things don't change and the global temperature rises more than 1.5 degrees Celsius, we are looking at massive catastrophes world-wide.

If that is the case, then addressing global warming needs to be the One Thing.

That means, anything else that does not further that goal needs to be put on hold until we take care of our One Thing. Focus all, ALL, energy and resources on keeping Earth from becoming a hot mess. That is going to require some shifts in thinking if people are serious about this One Thing.

An example is dams and dam breaching. One group of people want dams removed in the belief it will increase fish populations and benefit oceanic life. However, if you are really focusing on the One Thing, then dams would be left in place. They produce clean energy and how much carbon would need to be produced to build the infrastructure needed to replace them?

And if the temperature of the land and seas continue to rise, it will not matter how easy it is for fish to migrate. Fish can only reproduce within certain temperature parameters. Once things get too warm, fish numbers will continue to fall, dams or no.

Certain things, like maintaining civil order, feeding our children and keeping the human population as a whole in some semblance of sanity have to be continued. But, if people are sincere about this one thing, then it has to be the One Thing.

Other ills and woes will still be there once it is addressed, but those other distractions won't matter if our world is riddled with crop failure, extreme weather, disease, loss of animal and plant life and further instability across the board.


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