The Gravest Problem Animals Face: Man’s Self-Appointed Supremacy Over Them

Exposing the Big Game


“Time is running out” (A final message from John A. Livingston)

The following thoughts appear in the last chapter of the late John A. Livingston’s 1973 book, One Cosmic Instant; Man’s Fleeting Supremacy (a book I can especially relate to in that it dissects and begins to dismantle the entrenched, arrogant attitude that humans are apart from, and even superior to, the rest of life here on Earth). Livingston begins by comparing this complex, arrogant, human attitude to an ecosystem:

“In their natural environment, living beings face an infinity of survival problems—food shortages, predators, diseases, competitors, population stresses, and so on. The gravest problem they now face, however—man’s self-appointed supremacy over them—is strangely like an ecosystem. It has a vast and complicated array of interlocking components…

“As any naturalist knows, the quickest and neatest way to destroy an eco-system is to simplify it, to reduce its complexity and thus…

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5 thoughts on “The Gravest Problem Animals Face: Man’s Self-Appointed Supremacy Over Them

  1. Human (Man Animal) vs. Other Animals Clear Difference

    Man is a tool user and tool making is the most salient difference with other animals, some of which also use tools. Humans make other claims to uniqueness and specialness: accumulated knowledge, culture, religion (superstitions). But all animals are confronted with the same issues and spend a lot of their energy fighting for survival, feeding, f–k— (FFF), shelter and relative safety. Man’s entertainment fare is largely FFF. Now man also commits genocide against his own to the present day and against other animals. Man kills for fun on a large scale. Man kills for resources on a large scale, and for religion, and for ideological differences, and for sport and fun. Man engages in animal farming (aka ranching) killing and consuming 27 million plus per day. Man elevates himself to specialness, especially through his superstitions (religions). Man pollutes the earth to the point of climate change and the Anthropocene extinction era. Man is an eyeblink in time, but sees his existence as long and special. What is the entertainment fare this week in the FFF entertainment fare? Is not man more like a disease upon the Earth, rather than an ecological link in the ecology? How would we fare without our weapons and clothing? Would not Earth be better off without man? This is the Anthropocene Extinction, the sixth great extinction, which may include mankind. We have to change our environmental ways and how we live against wildlife and learn to coexist.

    See movie: The Day the Earth Stood Still with Keanu Reeves

    • Good one! They can prepare and hide out, but even billionaires could come to the end of the line. I wonder if they’ll be denying climate change then.

  2. It’s hard to imagine that our species will give up its self-appointed or biblically-sanctioned dominion. It serves our greed, our pleasure-seeking, and our growth-oriented economic system.

    Curtailing population growth has to fight the human belief that the world could not go on without little replicas of themselves. Some churches consider birth control–not to mention abortion–a mortal sin. Some claim promoting fewer births tantamount to genocide. Wall Street and Madison Avenue want more people to buy more stuff.

    There are also many countries with no social security, and so multiple children are supposed to provide for the elderly. (However, studies from India suggest that increasing numbers of adult offspring are seeking their own opportunities and are no longer remaining as caregivers.)

    In countries with ancestor worship as part of their religious traditions, families are desired for their relationship and help in this world and the next.

    It’t hard to be hopeful. Human religion, traditions, ecomonics, and just plain bone-headedness spell doom for the animals before our own.

    • I agree, and I would add that the sooner humans are gone the more likelihood something will survive us. I know I am full of doom and gloom, but just cannot express my sadness, anger and disappointment any other way.

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