Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Have Humans Conquered Weather?

It's a question I've been asking myself lately, ever since the big snow storm that hit the northeast a few weeks ago. What prompted this question was my shock that a day after the storm hit and dropped over two feet of snow, leaving people without power, business was to return as usual on Monday morning.

Thinking back through history, humanity has never had the hubris to assume that they could control the weather. Up until ancient times, civilizations believed that bad weather was a result of punishment from scorned gods. The weather dictated humanity; a poor flood along the Nile often meant starvation for Ancient Egypt. Weather determined which diseases and sicknesses spread throughout various regions and often resulted in epidemics. Now, humanity has found ways to cure the sickness, but have we been able to cure the weather?

The storm in the Northeast left two feet of snow and a lot of mess. Thousands were left without power, the public transit system shut down and parts of the line in Boston remained inoperable until three days after the storm passed. The governor of Massachusetts instituted a driving ban. Schools were out for most of the following week. Cars were buried nearly completely in snow. Yet, businesses expected employees to return to work on Monday morning.

I find it ridiculous that our lives have been so dictated by work that even against major snow storms, business cannot shut down to grant humans any downtime. Instead of enjoying being snowed in, spending time with family and children at home from closed schools, parents instead must grumpily head outside and shovel out their cars because they are needed at work the following day. People were out driving on dangerous roads the day after the storm when the roads themselves were not properly cleared.

It really makes me angry that our society has come to such a fast-paced style that humanity cannot even take a minute to catch up to the weather. Instead, we need to live our lives alongside epic storms and continue business as usual. Don't even get me started on the fact that such storms are growing in strength BECAUSE of our destructive society and lifestyle on the ecosystem...

That's a blog post for another day!