I have been both excited and reviled by a recent turn of events in West Papua.
There has been a discovery of what the media is referring to as a ‘lost world’. A previously uncharted section of forest/wilderness in the Foja Mountains. This is an exciting time, there is an abundance of species that have never been seen or recorded before. Amazing new pieces of the life mystery. Incredible discoveries.
I am, however, soemwhat worried about these discoveries, there are undoubtedly a number of people from all spheres who will now want to have a good look at the newly discovered frogs, butterflies and other assorted wildlife. I can’t help but wonder how long it will be until they are forced into extinction.
But mostly, I am struck with a pretty strong wave of revulsion from the complete and utter lack of respect shown in this quote from one of the explorers. “It’s been protected by ….. the fact the locals don’t hunt there as they see it as sacred.”
Now, it is true that maybe there was a lot of discourse between the explorers and the local tribes, and there was an amicable agreement, I haven’t looked into it that much. But regardless, it got me wondering, just how important is it to know about every freaking creature and piece of earth on this planet? Why do we have this obsession with stripping back every layer of mystique and exposing everything to the scientific eye?
I mean, why can’t we just say “It’s sacred land, let’s all respect that, above science, above pioneering. Let’s just keep this one little piece of mystery…”
I don’t know exactly what I want, or mean. Do you?
also, I can’t mention West Papua without suggesting you click this link.