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Kansas City MO 64131





Cindy Maddera

Some times I lie in bed wondering if I paid the bills and how much money we might have in our checking account. These thoughts are followed with worries about my credit card debt and a silent vow to stop using my credit cards. Then I start thinking about different projects at work and the contaminant that keeps showing up in my nanobody staining experiments. The nanobody thing is taking up a large amount of brain space right now. (Last night I dreamed that I was presenting a poster on that project and there was no bathroom handy. So I peed under the poster.) I worry about those people who are less fortunate than I am and who are going to lose their health insurance. Then I wonder if those people even realize that they voted to lose their health insurance. My concern then turns to that young man at a rural middle school who's education is going to be wrecked because school vouchers will pull funding from his school. I worry about how to communicate with people who voted for this current president. 

I worry.

My biggest worry, the thing that really makes me feel the need to breath into a paper bag, is climate change. My reality is that I am always going to be concerned about my finances. So that worry is never going away, but I have a good job with really really good health care. I am not in danger of losing my health care.  Yes, all of the coming changes sucks for the younger generation. All I can say is that I voted in your favor. Sorry. Not all Americans see each other as equals and there's a religious faction that truly believes this country lawfully should be praying to their god and playing by their rules. Actually, this current administration has made it very easy for me to be a selfish human being because I am not going to be hit too hard by the cruel policies that they are in the process of passing. But Climate Change? I can't be selfish about that. 

We are losing Antarctica piece by piece. The latest bit to fall off was the size of Delaware. Scientists can't say for sure how this new iceberg will effect already rising sea levels, but they can say that it has caused serious damage to the ice shelf that is holding back land ice. The more land ice that falls into the ocean, the higher the sea levels. Those of us living in the middle of this country, even rural areas, may not fully grasp the detrimental effects of climate change and rising sea levels. In 2005, Hurricane Katrina displaced 400,000 people. This article has some really good visuals on where all of those people ended up. Those 400,000 people were one city and many of those people were able to eventually go back to their home. Now imagine if that number was 13 million. That is the number of people who stand to be displaced by rising sea levels. 13 MILLION. These people will be permanently displaced, meaning that they will not be able go home. Ever. Think about how this changes your landscape. More people in your rural town means more housing, less space. This will mean more kids crammed into already over crowded schools. Then we have to consider what this kind of displacement means for employment. These people are going to need jobs. Are you willing to give them your job? We have a lot of empty land that we use for growing crops. Will we still have the luxury of keeping that land free for farming?  

I have read my scripture. I do remember something about God telling Adam to be a good steward, to take care of the land and it's animals. I can't help but think that if God really does exist, he's got to be pretty disappointed in the human race (for more than just how we treat the environment). I do what I can. I recycle and pick up trash. I try to buy local and or sustainable foods. When I ride my bicycle, I am riding not so much for fitness but because it is better for our air. I can request that the energy that turns the lights on in my home does not come from burning coal, but comes from renewable sources. My efforts are a drop in the bucket. This is why I vote in favor of environmental protections and regulations that not only protect the environment but the people living in that environment.

Isn't taking care of this planet the 'Christian' thing to do?