Photo: A rescued fruit bat (or flying fox as they're called in Australia) at the Bat House in Cape Tribulation- all run by volunteers of course! (July 2004).
While I tend to lean towards cynicism and brooding, I have to say that the more I look around the more I see people doing good things to make the world 'a better place,' or I should say, how I want the world to be! Just when I start to worry about the greenwashing being done by Inc-this and Inc-that, I read a story about local school kids in the Fraser Valley starting a Random Acts of Kindness club. In fact, they convinced our provincial government to declare February 12-19 as Random Acts of Kindness Week! Cool.
Then, just when I'm convinced organic food is being co-oped by the few big businesses that already control the production and distribution of all our food (and tobacco, toothpaste, soap, chemicals, pharmaceuticals etc. etc. etc.), I begin to see the farmers markets and local collectives more and more present in the neightbourhood. If you want to watch a great documentary, head to your local library and take out the Future of Food dvd. While it's terrible to hear about what many farmers have had to endure in the face of Monsanto and Cargill, there's hope in the end! We can have the world we want.
For a pleasant and humbling read, pick up David Suzuki and Holly Dressel's lovely book called "Good News for a Change: How Everyday People are Helping the Planet". It's a 2003 book, so I bet you'll find it at a second hand book store.
And the latest thing I NEED to share with you- something that gave me that 'another world is possible' kick in the ass that I needed- has been put out by AVAAZ.org. Head to their website and watch their short animated video on the post-9/11 US against THEM, West against East, West against Islam dichotomy that is produced through endless, repetitive fear mongering images and terror-words. Thank you to those who put the video together. I think these short viral videos may be the most effective means of spreading news in our hyperspeed, too-many-images-too-much-noise, don't believe the news machine world.