Fatal Attraction: Our Endless Affair with Plastic

Plastic chairby Julie at ProgressiveKid

Since its rise to prominence in the 1950s and ’60s as humanity’s go-to manufacturing material, plastic’s planetary proliferation has been staggering. The fact that this hardy polymer compared to any previously known standards lasts “forever”—that it will take hundreds of thousands, perhaps millions of years to biodegrade through Earth’s natural processes—didn’t seem like a liability until recently. If anything, plastic’s space-age indestructibility was a selling point. But now, half a century, billions of users, and trillions of products later, plastic is starting to collect. Imagine, if you dare, every piece of plastic ever made still out there, somewhere, in our ever-contracting world. Continue reading

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The High Price of Privilege

Eyeglassesby Sarah at ProgressiveKid

I live with two other people and five animals in a 1,400 square-foot house that includes my workplace. I know that compared to most of the world I live like a queen. I’m aware of this fact every day and I’m constantly grateful (except on really cranky days). But my home is in a community where most (although certainly not all) live in much grander style than I, and so I am in the somewhat unique position of being able to feel privileged while being reminded on a daily basis that I am merely a small wedge of cheese surrounded by wheels of brie. Continue reading