By Ahmed Konneh (Liberia)
Whenever I look in to the future, I’m scared. I know my generation will be defined by extreme injustice, mass poverty, diseases, climate change, global warming, tension, war and terrorism. I also know that values such as integrity, patriotism, trust, love and humanity will become extinct. I doubt not that extreme greed will become the order of the day. Hunger will launch a frontal assault on the “wretched of the earth.” If the current situation can be used to predict the future, there is no doubt the future of my generation looks bleak. This might seem depressing and pessimistic but sadly is the truth unless we respond faster. We have a sacred obligation to utter the current course of history for the benefit of the future generation.
Already, we live in a world where there is so much hardship, hate, war, greed, selfishness and hunger. We have more poor people in the world today than any other time in history. According to Joshua Cohen in his foreword of the book “Making Aid work”: “More than a billion people now live on less than a dollar a day; eight million children die each year because they are simply too poor to live; ten million children die each year because they have the terrible misfortune of being in a country with a high infant mortality rate”. We only have 25 years’ worth of coal and 50 years’ worth of oil left. Thousands of species are going extinct per day because of our current behaviors on earth. At the current rate of population growth, we will reach the carrying capacity of the earth (with estimates ranging from 8-20 billion) in around 50-100 years. This may seem like a long time but unless we act quicker, we were headed for a catastrophic future.
Our generation must use the breakthroughs in technology and science to improve the human condition. Securing a more peaceful and safer environment for the next generation is perhaps the greatest moral challenge of our generation. We owe the next generation a cleaner, hunger free and more peaceful environment. The past generation in spite of all its awful deeds put the man on the moon. They witnessed the first personal computer. They saw the undisputed rise of capitalism and Democracy.
We must act now to save the future generation. With all the negative forces against us, we cannot afford to wait for the ‘perfect time’. The consequences of inaction is deadly. We must not only advocate for a better future but must ensure it is a reality. Our generation needs to harness the human power of creativity and innovation to overcome many of the threats facing us and the future generation. It is only through taking all of these preemptive measures that people like me will not look into the future with fear and hopelessness.
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