This reading looks at geography, specifically human geography. Geographer, Jared Diamond, examines how societies rise and fall based on how they use and manage environmental resources. Diamond believes that the fall of the Norse society was because they cut down their forests. Diamond creates a bigger statement, claiming that societies do not fall due to outside circumstances, they destroy themselves from within, committing societal suicide. Instead of adapting to their changing circumstances, they stayed set in their ways that no longer suited the environment. Is Diamond suggesting that instead of trying to stop and slow climate change, we should adapt to our environment as it changes? What could that possibly look like?
I thought it was very interesting that the author brought up that Oregon has done a great job limiting new construction sprawl, but now the legislation surrounding that has changed (that was 2005, where do we stand now?). As an Oregonian who has seen Oregon grow and eliminate small family farms and rural farmlands, I’m well aware of this problem. A major issue in Oregon right now is that so many Californians dislike the political state and current housing situation of their own state that they move to Oregon, but then turn Oregon into another California. Other states like Texas are also experiencing this. To accommodate them, farmlands are bought up and new houses are built. In Wilsonville, where I am from, an equestrian center was sold, demolished, just to be replaced with hundreds of cookie-cutter houses. Other traditional farms had been bought out to build another massive, sprawling neighborhood, Villebois. I am not surprised that Oregon’s legislation has changed because of how Kate Brown, governor, has been ruining Oregon from within. Upon reflecting on this, I do agree with Diamond that societies destroy themselves, although I feel that governments and people in power are far more responsible for the destruction of their societies.