How is it possible that humans killed in excess of one hundred million fellow humans in the twentieth century alone? Humans inflicting pain of such magnitude on one another is beyond anything you can imagine and that’s not taking into account the mental, emotional, and physical violence; the torture, pain, and cruelty they continue to inflict on each other as well as on other sentient beings on a daily basis.

Do they act in this way because they’re in touch with their natural state, the joy of life within? Of course not, only people who are in a deeply negative state, who feel very bad indeed, would create such a reality as a reflection of how they feel. Now they are engaged in destroying nature and the planet that sustains them. Unbelievable, but true.

Humans are a dangerously insane and very sick species. That’s not a judgment, it’s a fact. It is also a fact that the sanity is there underneath the madness. Healing and redemption are available right now. —Eckhart Tolle, The Power of Now

One reason for my recent silence is the fact that I have been deeply affected by the BP oil spill in the Gulf. It has been difficult for me to express my feelings about this, as I imagine it has been for many people. However, the excerpt above from The Power of Now is the closest thing that I can find to express my current feelings toward the human race.

The Blame Game

Much of the finger-pointing that has gone in the wake of this tragedy is fruitless. I have heard individuals blame BP, the government, the American people, and even Barack Obama. The truth is that everyone is responsible for what happened. The United States is a nation consumed by greed, sloth, and excess. This is not a judgment, it is a fact. And yes, I include myself in the equation.

The question is not, who is at fault, but rather, what are we going to do from here on out? How are we going to prevent this from happening again? How are we going to treat the root of the problem—our dangerous dependency on oil?

Accountability

Despite the fact that I hold everyone responsible, I still believe that BP must be held accountable for the dangerous, unethical practices that caused this tragedy.

Internal documents from BP show that there were serious problems and safety concerns with the Deepwater Horizon rig far earlier than those the company described to Congress last week.

The problems involved the well casing and the blowout preventer, which are considered critical pieces in the chain of events that led to the disaster on the rig.

The documents show that in March, after several weeks of problems on the rig, BP was struggling with a loss of “well control.” And as far back as 11 months ago, it was concerned about the well casing and the blowout preventer. —NY Times

This criminal negligence led to the death and injury of countless human beings and animals. The individuals involved must be held accountable and criminally prosecuted. BP must be made to pay reparations to all of the individuals and business affected at whatever cost. And it is the duty of the United States government to ensure that this happens.

The positive-spin public relations campaign that BP has launched is a sin. During the first stage of my research for this article, I thought about sharing things that you, my readers, could do about the spill. I typed, “what can i do about the gulf oil spill?” into a Google search. I was horrified by the ad featured at the top of the search results. See for yourself.

“Learn More about How BP is Helping.” Seriously? What is your definition of helping? You can not help a human being after you murder her. Likewise, you can not help the environment after you murder it.

When you click the link (which I could not do without cringing) you are taken to a site featuring smiling men and women helping animals, hosing feathers, cleaning oil, and so on. It is a lie, a false beautiful depiction of humanity—a false coming together.

The truth is that this positive-spin public relations campaign is an insult to everyone. More, it is an insult to the environment and the animals that have been raped & destroyed at the hands of greed.

There should be a mandate that forbids anyone from supporting BP’s positive-spin public relations campaign. Google should remove the ad that I’ve captured above as well as any others like it.

Instead of photographs of lies, we must share photographs of the truth. If BP will not do it, then the rest of the world must.

To see more photographs depicting this devastation, see the Huffington Post’s Animals in Peril.

Where Do We Go from Here?

Like I mentioned above, I thought about using this post to share things that you, my readers, could do about the oil spill. However, since then I have decided not to. There are many brave, wonderful people and groups working to combat the oil spill right now. I do not discourage you from supporting those causes.

On the other hand, though, I am hesitant to ask people to give money to the Gulf crisis. I believe that BP should be made to cover the costs of these damages. Should the American (and global) population be encouraged to donate money to the clean up? BP has enough money at this point to run top placing ads and launch an intense positive-spin public relations campaign that must have cost millions. At this point, shouldn’t BP’s money be forcibly spent on the crisis in the Gulf instead?

Rather than encouraging you to support any specific cause or donate dollars to any foundation, I simply encourage you to do two things:

  • 1. Ask yourself, “What am I going to do TODAY to begin combating my dangerous oil dependency and the dangerous oil dependency of my nation?”
  • 2. Share this post with as many people as you can and help me spread this critical message.

Click the share buttons to the right to share this on Twitter and Facebook!

14 thoughts on “The Gulf Oil Spill”

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  10. I have been avoiding images of the BP oil disaster – and then I saw the ones you posted Dena. The whole thing, the stupidity and incompetence, arrogance and greed, the human and wildlife deaths, the sorrow and pain – all makes me ill. These photos are brutal.

    I too have been unable to articulate my feelings about this disaster. I still can’t but I will, for what it’s worth, pass on your e-mail to everyone I know.

    Our collective sorrow and prayers have got to help in some way…

    But I am an action person, and in this case I haven’t a clue as to what I can do.

    1. Pat,

      I can not thank you enough for your words. To know that this post touched even one person — my goal is accomplished. This is a tragedy beyond what our mere words can describe, but yes — our collective sorrow & prayers have got to help in some way. Just by sharing this message and raising the levels of awareness about this nightmare, you are doing something.

      From the bottom of my heart, I thank you.

      –Dena

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