Monday, January 31, 2011

High? Our eco system?

A friend who visited Delhi after some years away reported the new, hip thing to do in Delhi clubs. Cocaine. Affluent men, women of the upper classes lazed around getting high, but it was the lax attitude about it that shocked her.

Cocaine is primarily a substance which stimulates the brain and is highly addicitve. I'll leave the pros and cons to the reader, but has anyone really thought about the supply chain and how it actually affects the eco system?

In fact, even the illegal cultivation of cocaine (AND ganja and other drugs) kills acres of rain forests in Costa Rica, protected national reserves world over, acres of the Amazon and supports violent, drug-cartel related crimes globally. In fact, Colombia being the 2nd largest producer of Coca saw its forest cover falling from 82% to 78% between 2002 to 2007 where as the drug crimes in Mexico just gets worse.

Danilo VillafaƱƩ, an Arhuaco indigenous leader in Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta who is helping his people take back lands formerly controlled by guerrillas and cultivated by commercial coca growers.
Photos by Rhett A. Butler 2010.

The implications are frankly scary, specially in a day and age where we need out living greens to at least sustain the earth as we pollute it from one end. The question is, does a drug have to cost so much?

So the next time, someone narrates me a story about getting high in Hikka and how fun it was, I'll only be thinking how misinformed that person is. That maybe being a little less ignorant where your intoxicants come from would probably take you out of a cycle that cultivates deforestation, promotes poverty/dependency and violent crime the world over.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Amaarisge Ethnocentrism+Marketing

Ethnocentrism is the tendency to believe that one's ethnic or cultural group is centrally important, and that all other groups are measured in relation to one's own.- Wikipedia
Inspired by Barbara Kruger's Work