A brilliant and alarming article! Based on my experiences in Việt Nam, I couldn’t agree more. It is the most urgent and pressing task for all citizen and politicians to act immediately beside fighting the pandemic.
-Heinrich Graumann (Facebook post)
This is my latest article for VNExpress International about an existential issue that is near and dear to my heart, as it should be for everyone everywhere. I look forward to seeing it in translation because the Vietnamese are my primary target audience – for obvious reasons.
Here’s an excerpt:
It has been my privilege to live in Vietnam for 16 years, nearly 40 percent of my adult life.
I am a global citizen without national affiliation who sees the goodness and even greatness, past, present, and future, of every country.
I also care deeply about those issues and areas – sometimes openly discussed, other times lurking just beneath the rhetorical surface, and still others not something to be spoken of in public – that are in desperate need of improvement.
One of the most pressing problems in the world that you and I share are widespread air and water pollution. These are not academic or long-term issues but rather existential and immediate ones that affect the people and natural world of Vietnam in the here and now.
I am saddened and angered by the total disregard so many people show for Mother Nature and their country by throwing trash out of their car windows, dumping garbage into lakes and rivers, and burning all manner of waste as an expedient yet toxic means of garbage disposal. These are acts of ecocide, defined as the destruction of the natural environment by deliberate or negligent human action.
On 31 July 2021 this article ranked 10th among the “most read” articles on VNExpress International, the only one that wasn’t about COVID-19.
As of 4 August 2021, it was the “most liked” article on VNExpress International.
Shalom (שלום), MAA