I just saw a fairly recent (February 2008) film showing a slide-show that Al Gore recently gave on climate change. Here’s a version of the video from Ted.com. It’s inline with the material presented in his film, An Inconvenient Truth, but includes recent data and observations.
I watched that video once earlier today, and once again the moment this posting went live. To be honest, while I think he makes amazing points, I have a hard time watching it, mostly because the frustration is so evident in his speech. As far as he is concerned (along with most of the scientists out there), everything he is stating in so amazingly obvious it’s hard to fathom how there hasn’t been a huge movement to correct these issues. And I completely agree.
Real change takes passion. It times time, energy, and sacrifice. But that does not automatically imply that real, meaningful change has to be hard, just that it takes determination.
To clarify that point, I want to make mention of a blog entry I did a few weeks ago where I talked about how Google was giving every homeless person in San Francisco a free phone number. I approached Google about helping pull that off in Vancouver, but I never got a reply. So instead of giving up, I gathered a group of people together in Vancouver and pitched the idea of doing it ourselves. With luck, next week that system will go live.
I mention that not to toot my own horn, but to show that not all change is hard to obtain. In this case, the system will hopefully help people in this city, give hope to those who need it the most, and will serve as a demonstration that not all big ideas take big effort. All it took was the collective efforts of a few people, and a little drive. That’s all most things ever take.
Last weekend I attended the Junos in Calgary, and went in the capacity as a photographer with the media. My blog, which doesn’t really ever get a lot of traffic, was on the front page of results on Google for the Junos, often above CTV and other mainstream news outlets. And who am I? I’m just a nobody — a computer dork that hacks away at PHP in my spare time, sets up blogs, watches movies, and sometimes treats myself to a helping of nachos. But that’s the point.
Our generation is really the first one that has the capacity to rise above politics, above media censorship, above lies, and have our voices heard whenever we want. Some of us have blogs, some of us get Facebook traffic, and others undoubtedly know someone that does. Some of you are writers, some painters, some singers, some photographers, all with a medium available to voice your frustrations with the world or inspire the change you want to see in it. And if you believe in something enough, whether it’s climate change or something else, there’s really nothing stopping you from making a difference or making yourself heard.
A single drop in a pond, no matter how small, will still cause a ripple.