Most of us reading this are fortunate enough to grow up in a taken for granted, hyper-connected world where news from across the world often gets to us before even local news. So I’m sure I’m not the only one who was profoundly stumped when I learned about the fires ravaging across the Amazon rainforest for days on end before news broke out. Mind you, the Amazon isn’t burning because of climate change, but the damage the rampant human deforestation will have on our global environment cannot be understated.
That being said, it’s important to remember that navigating the news these days is more in line with a 12-step process, which is far from the headline skimming most of us do as we scroll down the infinite social media feed. While it’s great that people are spreading the word, why now? Unusual fires have been plaguing the Amazon for years, not to mention the entirety of this year. The number of fire incidents range from anywhere between 35,000 and 70,000 from the start of this calendar year. This outrage could have taken place months ago. It’s interesting what social media decides to push and when.
Still, I couldn’t help but feel pangs of shame when the first thing I thought of when I heard “Amazon fire” was an electronic device.
– Talat Ahmed, Sub-editor, SHOUT