Jim Webster: Resistance to change
November 12, 2015
There is an aspect of human behavior that resists change, even when there is overwhelming evidence that circumstances have altered. For instance, City Market completed its renovations just about one year ago. But do you think I can figure out now where I can find the frozen blueberries? Also, the fresh vegetables and fruit section seems to be smaller than before, and the over-the-counter medicines seem unnaturally close to the eggs and cheese.
If I had been on vacation for the past several years and no one had told me about City Market's renovation, I would be none the wiser about what had existed before, so I would just muddle through the aisles. However, since I did live through the renovation, I find it annoying that everything is in a different spot, or some things have gone completely. I quietly hope during each visit that it will all suddenly change back. And I have a conspiracy theory that the store renovations were done by management to accommodate visitors but not local residents. — a "gotcha" moment.
When it comes to other changes in the community, I wish I were younger or smarter, so I could understand them. Is it not a simple matter to figure out what school space is needed to educate our children? I mean, we know how many kids there are or will be, don't we? It is not rocket science. Why should it be difficult to choose a location and build a new school with support from the community? Is our resistance to change so strong that we would jeopardize our children's education, even when the evidence presented is that we have outgrown the existing classroom space? Or, perhaps it was just the wrong plan.
When it comes to climate change, it is easy to ignore it and resist changing activities. Sure, it is annoying that glaciers are melting, bird migration patterns have altered, oceans are getting warmer, animal species are dying, storms are getting more intense and certain regions of the world are experiencing desertification. But because these changes do not seriously affect me directly, I can just pretend my behavior is not contributing to global warming. I can speculate that climate scientists are conspiring to get some advantage at the expense of others.
Just as there is clear evidence that the layout at City Market has changed (and will not change back), so too is the scientific evidence that the average world climate temperature has recently increased significantly in conjunction with elevated levels of CO2 in the atmosphere. The consequences of allowing this trend to continue are deadly serious for our very existence. The Federal government has chosen to propose policies to limit greenhouse emissions to improve our chances of survival. The Colorado State Attorney General has chosen to sue the Federal government on its proposed policies and resist these changes.
In the future, when I find my frozen blueberries at City Market, I hope I will be able to get them home without them thawing first.
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