Life After People – The History Channel
While flipping through channels today, I noticed a miniseries by The History Channel called “Life After People.” They had been running some ads over the past several weeks with an interesting line that went something like this… Welcome to Earth: Population 0.
It intrigued me and so I flipped to it. After just a few minutes into it, I realized that the show wasn’t all scientific, but was almost all political. And it was just a human race bash. I didn’t watch much, but the 10 minutes I did watch were rather disappointing and more to the point — disturbing.
What is with these people who believe that the human race has no right to be on this planet?!?! I understand the concept of taking care of the environment. I’m all for that. I support environmental awareness (although I should probably do a better job of it). But why is it that we can’t co-exist with mother nature? Are we not part of this ecosystem? Much of the talk in the show was about how if the humans were not around how well the environment would do. Of all the species on this planet, why are we the ones who don’t belong?
To be fare, I didn’t watch the whole thing and it’s very possible that the show is well done. I just was disappointed with what little I saw.
I think the answer to your question is that humans (to this point) have had no check put on us. There are no preadators to keep our population in check, etc. Therefore, we are literally stronger than nature’s ability to rein us in.
Try as we might, we can’t kill off enough of ourselves quickly enough to maintain balance. Scientifically speaking, we’re overdue for a correction; a flu pandemic, a comet crashing into earth, or drastic climate change that wipes out a large part of the human population. But, if that doesn’t happen, there are still handguns, weapons of mass destruction, genocide, pollution, and a thousand other ways we try to “thin out” our own herds.
Read “There Will Come Soft Rains” by Ray Bradbury; it’s a short story that deals with this–really interesting and much more aesthetic, I’m sure, than a documentary.
I totally disagree with your answer. Why are we not part of the ecosystem? There are lots of species that went extinct prior the the human race. Why are we seen as so overbearing?
Don’t get me wrong… I don’t think we should go around trying to make species extinct. I think we should do everything we can to save them. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t be here. Which is the feeling I get from a lot of environmentalists.
“There Will Come Soft Rains” is a brilliant short story. But what is really compelling about it is how the house continues to operate without the humans. The world will go on without us. It doesn’t really have anything to do with humans destroying the ecosystem of earth (which was the original intent of my rant).
I agree that humans have a “right” to exist as much as any species has. I think their point is that an ecosystem eventually reaches some form of balance or stasis. But where humans are involved, there is nothing to balance out our power and our destruction. The ecosystem cannot adjust/evolve quickly enough to counter our negative effects and eventually it will die if we don’t learn to live within our means, environmentally speaking.
I’m not advocating any position, I was just postulating a theory to answer your original question.