We are the killer strain
Roger Marolt’s apocalyptic description of the approaching climate catastrophe (“Paying now or paying later — either way it’s gonna hurt,” commentary, Jan. 17, aspentimes.com) brought to mind a special experience I had in my sophomore year at Indiana University. Being in the School of Arts and Sciences, I had to take a science class.
The only one open was a senior-level genetics class. I didn’t know it when I signed up, but the professor turned out to be a Nobel laureate named Tracy Sonneborn. He won the prize for discovering the killer stain of the paramecium.
If you put paramecia in a limited culture, they will reproduce normal single-cell organisms until the food runs out. Then, they’ll start giving birth to killer strains that go around killing other paramecia until the population is under control.
I see parallels between this phenomenon and our current climate dilemma. The limited culture is planet Earth. The normal paramecia are all other life. The killer strain is mankind. We’ve been gobbling up the world’s resources as if there’ll be no end.
So, to make room, we’re causing mass extinctions of species. Soon, that won’t be enough and we’ll hafta eliminate our own kind. By that time the Earth will be so miserable, the living will envy the dead.
Participate in The Longevity Project
The Longevity Project is an annual campaign to help educate readers about what it takes to live a long, fulfilling life in our valley. This year Kevin shares his story of hope and celebration of life with his presentation Cracked, Not Broken as we explore the critical and relevant topic of mental health.
Does this kinda talk frighten you? It should. The time for talk and writing is over. The time for action is here.
Fred Malo Jr.
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User Legend: Moderator Trusted User
With all the noise around testing Ms. Owens, I fear the real testing issues for our community, which impact our lives and livelihood, have been missed by one and all.