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Meditations on "The Price Tag of Being Young"

Parents, grandparents, and great-grandparents, mature and wealthy in years; I wish to extend to you my boundless gratitude! Thanks for our inheritance and the legacy you have left our future generations: the destruction of the planet as we know it; the “pale blue dot” that we all call home.

Your values, including your mindless materialism, your endless pursuit of property and toys, your gross lust for over-sized gas-guzzling vehicles, your ceaseless hunger for meat with every meal, and your apathy for the suffering of others who happen to have been born less fortunate than you have fashioned an extremely uncomfortable future for millennials and coming generations.

To me, despite the loss of wealth, and the pain, suffering, disaster, and destruction that we all have to look forward to; perhaps the most crushing curse of all is the realization that I may never have a child. I may never know the joy that you have experienced by passing on your genes and bringing new life into the universe. Given the dark climate on humanity’s horizon, my enduring moral conscience cannot cope with adding another sentient being to the equation. Unlike our beloved deities, I cannot create a life that I know is doomed to encounter far greater suffering than I. Furthermore, I cannot add what essentially will amount to another harmful set of carbon footprints.

I hope these statements and my sarcasm give you great pause and make you feel quite uncomfortable. I am not proclaiming this because I feel I am coming from a position of superiority, or moral high-ground, no; I am often as culpable as you, for after all, I am your progeny. I do not say this because I wish you harm. On the contrary, I wish to awaken you. Friends, I am your fellow traveler; ever learning and unlearning, and always growing. I desire that you feel the shame that I have felt many times; that quaking shock when you come to encounter your own cognitive dissonance. I hope you feel a bone-cringing disgust like the sensation of tasting a nine-volt battery to test its charge. I hope you review your behavior, and humbly and earnestly long for change. Unfortunately, if you do not change, if mankind does not alter its course, and if all of us continue in our collective carelessness; there will not be much of a life left to care for. 

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