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Old 04-08-2011, 06:53 AM
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Default Solving Humanity's Problems

The atmosphere on TOS has been a bit dreary as of late. While there is nothing wrong with identifying problems with humanity, I think that we need less fingers pointed at problems and more fingers pointed at solutions.

so what do you think is the best way to go about solving Humanity's problems?

How do we solve issues such as feeding the world's growing population, preventing the decline of the environment, stopping wars, etc?

How do we overcome common boundaries such as human laziness, apathy, or distrust?

How do we bring about change in humanity itself?
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Old 04-08-2011, 07:05 AM
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I think one tool to help stop war and to bring peace is economics. Countries would probably be less inclined to go to war with a country they have economic ties with.
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Old 04-08-2011, 07:14 AM
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I don't want to sound bleak, but I don't think there's anything humanity can do as a species to "change humanity itself". I also don't think that this is even possible to be a good or a bad thing (any more than say, ants "changing themselves" would be).

But as far as problems that humans face, again I'm going to have to say that there are "actual" solutions. As in... there's nothing anyone can do that's actually going to "solve" wars or world younger on the spot. Raise awareness, volunteer, do your part and all that but for the foreseeable future there are always going to be others who don't do this.

Am I saying we therefore shouldn't try? No... But solving humanity's problems seems like such a massive and seemingly impossible undertaking all together that I think we should focus on the small things that actually can be done, like I mentioned above.
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Old 04-08-2011, 07:20 AM
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It all starts with one step in the right direction. Whats that saying about Rome not being built in a day? If everyone follows the axiom that trying is pointless, nothing will ever get done. Do your part and others will soon follow.
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Old 04-08-2011, 07:56 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Icu View Post
I don't want to sound bleak, but I don't think there's anything humanity can do as a species to "change humanity itself". I also don't think that this is even possible to be a good or a bad thing (any more than say, ants "changing themselves" would be).

But as far as problems that humans face, again I'm going to have to say that there are "actual" solutions. As in... there's nothing anyone can do that's actually going to "solve" wars or world younger on the spot. Raise awareness, volunteer, do your part and all that but for the foreseeable future there are always going to be others who don't do this.

Am I saying we therefore shouldn't try? No... But solving humanity's problems seems like such a massive and seemingly impossible undertaking all together that I think we should focus on the small things that actually can be done, like I mentioned above.
History is full of men and women who managed who despite being a single individual managed to overcome. They may not have fully fixed the problems in their own lifetime but at least they made the world a better place and set the stage for change to happen. Sometimes I think that we too easily forget an issue once it has been solved.





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Old 04-08-2011, 09:19 AM
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We could find solutions to all our problems over time imo.. It's just, humans are lazy, I even speak for myself here sometimes, the majority do actually know we're gonna be in trouble in the future but does anyone actually do anything about it? No..... We expect and hope for others to fix things, we could all just do our little parts, everyone in the world!

On the global warming topic..
we could just never leave things on standby, Always turn things off when we aren't using them and also, develop a new kind of renewable energy which can be used, that doesn't damage the ozone layer, EVERYONE in the world could work together to fix this issue, but how to get the message to every single person on the planet? This is where the problems are. :/
We'd need every human we spread the message to, to spread it to another 30 people or so and some people just don't have the time or patience...

The worlds growing population is natural, however can be solved, yet again... Getting the message around for two parents only to have two kids as to make sure there is no increase or decrease, but of course, it's getting the message around that is the problem yet again, and to be honest I don't think everyone would listen..

I am however not saying that we are a species destined to vanish, I live in hope that one day in the future (if we're not already in the brown stuff then) that us humans will evolve intelligently, with more strengths, and fewer weaknesses.. But for the moment the best we can do is to carry on trying to persuade people to stop their every day life for just one second, and take a look at themselves...
There is no need for all the wars, hate and disgusting scenes on this planet, this planet is beautiful, as much as some of us don't believe that, it's just got things living on it which are infected with a virus, US.

.. But Viruses can be quarantined, so can we ..







Pretty relevant video imho.
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Old 04-08-2011, 10:43 AM
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I'll give you some raw but somewhat undeveloped answers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Banefull View Post
How do we solve issues such as feeding the world's growing population, ?
Massive investment in genetic engineered food, such as culturing meat and engineering crops to produce more food. The latter of which has been in practice for some time.

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Originally Posted by Banefull View Post
preventing the decline of the environment,?
Cleaner, more efficient technology. Expansion to other planets to reduce stress on Earth.

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Originally Posted by Banefull View Post
stopping wars, etc?
Errrr....

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Originally Posted by Banefull View Post
How do we overcome common boundaries such as human laziness, apathy, or distrust?
A heavily modified version of Fascism (still working on this).

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Originally Posted by Banefull View Post
How do we bring about change in humanity itself?
21st Century Eugenics? Otherwise it really is impossible.
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Old 04-08-2011, 11:01 AM
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Actually, the title of this shows part of the problem - we CAN'T 'solve humanity's problems'. The problem, as it were, is way too big. It's NICE being able to say 'let's stop world poverty' and 'let's stop war', but...you know, way too big a problems. (Besides, we can't stop war - last I checked, we weren't in control of every single government and every single group in conflict...)

You have to break it down to what you, personally, can do to help. Enough people do that, things will change - but don't wait around for other people. A lot of it is common sense - don't waste resources. This can be as simple as turning off lights when you don't need them, turning your computer off instead of letting it sleep, have quick showers instead of half an hour ones, take the bathwater out and put it on the garden.

There is also this thing called the 100 Mile Diet - which is pretty much what it says on the box. Only try and eat things that have been grown or caught within a 100 miles of where you live (obviously this is adapted depending on WHERE you live) - this supports local farmers, the local economy, and also cuts down on your carbon footprint by way of transport and packaging. Seriously, if you just poke around that website, it has all kinds of ideas.

Walk, cycle, catch public transport when you can...

Volunteer, volunteer, volunteer. Volunteer at GreenPeace, WorldPeace, Red Cross, UNICEF, CARE, all those things. Donate where you can, but also put in your time and effort and passion. Not only will you be making a difference, you will also FEEL like you are doing something - and frankly, anything is better than sitting around and complaining about how awful everything is. Shut up and DO SOMETHING.

(And try and educate yourself on a problem, too, before running somewhere to tell people how to fix their lives. It's no good telling the farmers in Brazil to stop cutting down the Amazon until you go and understand WHY it's all happening, and thus suggestions on how to fix the ENTIRE problem can actually be useful. Instead of just 'I value this tree more than your children's lives' - that's going to get everyone absolutely nowhere.)

And you know what? Support things that just try and make people's LIVES better. This is about solving humanity's problems, right? Well, part of this is sex education, access to reliable and cheap contraception and medical advice and help, medically sound abortion (actually, on this? It doesn't matter if you think a woman should or shouldn't - we have the right to control what happens to our bodies, we have the right to OPTIONS that won't kill us or land us in hospital. And, yes, sometimes pregnancy itself kills. Trust us to make our own informed choices, mmkay?). Actually, Americans can help by volunteering at Planned Parenthood (assuming the US government doesn't shut it down, which'll cause harm to thousands, if not millions, of American women) and escort women past the protesters (one of my online friends does this - the other day, the protesters reduced a woman trying to enter to tears. Why was she there? To get a check-up, because Planned Parenthood was the only place she could afford to go. The treatment she got by those protesters is utterly disgusting). Humanity can't move forward if an entire gender is constantly treated as second class. If our sexuality is controlled, our bodies deemed as nothing more important as breeding machines, how the hell do you expect humans to get anywhere as a culture and a species? (And I notice, too, that the people who are generally pro-forced birth/anti-abortion, are also against sex education, contraception, paid maternity leave, and last I checked, the vocal ones didn't have any ideas about how to fix Child Services and adoption (including letting gay couples adopt, because apparently children are better being shunted from foster home to foster home than raised in a stable, loving environment by two people of the same gender) - all things that would actually help both mother and child. There are exceptions, but as a rule? Yeah, not so much)

Education for women is also highly important - it improves them, it improves their communities, and as a bonus, the more highly educated a woman, generally the fewer children she has. If you can, try and support that. Education in GENERAL is needed, so much. And yes, this includes the working classes in the first world, too. You can't help the third world if children in your own country are being failed by the education system.

Support, too, attempts to dismantle the current rape culture. Before anyone tries to tell me that is a "woman's issue" - hello, we're human too. And by the way, the vast majority of rapists are men. This is a huge problem - one in five American women will be sexually assaulted in her lifetime (and the rate is twice as high in the US military, so the idea that the US military is over in the middle east 'liberating women' is ironic at best) (I've also seen stats that one in thirty-three men will be raped, too - again, not a 'woman's' issue here). The vast majority of rapists? Are men. This is a cultural problem - every time someone says "she deserved it because she wore a short skirt", "she had it coming", "it was her own fault", every time someone jokes about getting a woman so drunk she can't say no...congratulations. You are perpetrating the rape culture. It's not just about women defending themselves, this issue is also about men getting the picture that they shouldn't freaking rape people. You can also donate and support rape crisis and domestic abuse centres and organizations, including a number of ones about Men Against Rape.

Again: Humanity can't move forward if an entire gender is constantly treated as second class.

And we certainly can't move forward and fix our problems without getting out there and doing something. Fix humanity? No can do. Try and fix a problem, or a number of clearly defined problems? Yes, we can. As long as we get out there and TRY. So, call up or contact your local representative on the issues that concern you, research what organizations are there in your area, do all the things you can do by yourself and then join others to help them and...

Well, let's face it. You can't HURT the issues, and you might just well help.
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Old 04-08-2011, 02:54 PM
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Really short answer for now but I imagine that more equitable consumption and management of resources would do wonders for the world (especially if the United States started consuming less). How that's gonna happen...well, I don't know but it won't be a painless change.
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Old 04-08-2011, 03:39 PM
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Good points everyone. Time for me to throw my hat in the ring, I guess.

I think we need a new mindset when it comes to environmentalism. We need to accept that we are creatures of this Earth, because in reality, there is no "environment," where all the rest of the non-human plant and animal life is domed off in a seperate biosphere from us. There is no "human world" and "natural world," there is just "the world." Period. No matter how much we believe otherwise, humanity, and all it's baggage, is a part of the world, the same world that nature shares. The biggest downfall of the current environmentalist movement is this separatist attitude, and I'm sure if the Na'vi could see it they would declare the movement just as insane as every other Sky People activity because of this attitude. We might not be able to get the knowledge back that long gone indigenous peoples and the Na'vi have, but we can at least revive their mindset. We need to begin viewing the natural world as an equal again, and feel and view it the way these peoples do. Not until we can truly feel, See, the Earth and it's ills in the same deep, personal way native peoples do, will we be able to heal the world. THAT is the message of Avatar, not about buying a Prius and flourescent light bulbs, but about learning to See the world through the eyes of the people that walked in harmony with it. Then, and only then, will humanity be able to find a new way forward. Only when we are able to truly feel the effects of our actions, will we be able to change them. Only once we learn to See again will we be able to find balance with the Earth while still progressing, of true technological harmony. The way needs to be living with nature, not walling ourselves off from it.

I also think a good way to encourage people to have smaller families is tax incentives.
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Old 04-08-2011, 04:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Banefull View Post
History is full of men and women who managed who despite being a single individual managed to overcome. They may not have fully fixed the problems in their own lifetime but at least they made the world a better place and set the stage for change to happen. Sometimes I think that we too easily forget an issue once it has been solved.




I think you're just proving my point (maybe you weren't even disagreeing). Racism is still prevalent all over the world today, he didn't "solve" it. He just did all that he could and in his case it was quite a lot.

I'm just saying we shouldn't think of it in such grand terms but should only ask ourselves what it is that we could do to make whatever probably small but still important impact that we can. I'm sure Dr. King wasn't thinking "How do I solve racism for humanity" but rather "how can I make a difference"
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Old 04-08-2011, 04:49 PM
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Honestly, I doubt it is possible unless population growth is brought under control, and within the next generation.
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Old 04-08-2011, 05:55 PM
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How do we solve issues such as feeding the world's growing population, preventing the decline of the environment, stopping wars, etc?
Religion and government are the main cause of world-wide conflicts. I'm not saying that religion or government is bad I'm saying that we need the right kind of mindset relating to these two. I would argue for population control and as Spock has said generic engineered food.

How do we overcome common boundaries such as human laziness, apathy, or distrust?
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Errrr.... A heavily modified version of Fascism (still working on this).
Sorry I am uber anti-fascist Fascism is "totalitarian single-party state" it is the same as Stalinism which is a "totalitarian single-party state." One guy in power seems cool until you realize how true the statement "power corrupts absolute power corrupts absolutely." I would argue that socialism with social democracy would be the better alternative or Trotskyism.

How do we bring about change in humanity itself?
Knowledge is power the majority of humanity has changed before for example racism was widespread however today while it would be ignorant to deny it exists it isn't as widespread as it used to be. Control the flow of information and you control people.
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Old 04-08-2011, 08:12 PM
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Quote:
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I think you're just proving my point (maybe you weren't even disagreeing). Racism is still prevalent all over the world today, he didn't "solve" it. He just did all that he could and in his case it was quite a lot.

I'm just saying we shouldn't think of it in such grand terms but should only ask ourselves what it is that we could do to make whatever probably small but still important impact that we can. I'm sure Dr. King wasn't thinking "How do I solve racism for humanity" but rather "how can I make a difference"
Perhaps you are right Icu. We shouldn't just be focused on problems but whether we can make the world a better place.
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Old 04-08-2011, 11:36 PM
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Don't believe one person cannot change the world, especially in this age. Remember that all it took was a handful of progressives and an laptop to change the middle east forever. Indeed most revolutions happen this way - just a few ambitious people who thought differently.
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