Archived Letter – 1454

The Igloo Allegory
Once upon a time there was a very rich man that lived in a huge house and drove a big SUV. One day he decided he would take his wife and two children on a wilderness adventure to experience the great white north of the Canadian Arctic. He arranged to have 2 Inuit craftsmen build them a large igloo with ice walls 2 feet thick. When he got the call that all was ready, he packed ample supplies and arranged to be transported to a village near where the igloo had been built. From there they travelled by dog sled to the campsite and loaded their supplies into their temporary home. The builders handed him a small oil lamp with a supply of traditional whale oil and told him that this would provide them with light, and heat for their igloo. The rich man assured them he would not need the old lamp because he had packed all the necessities for their weeklong stay. The native guides shook their heads and headed back to the village a few miles away.
The rich man and his family went into the igloo since it was very cold and windy outside. They pulled out battery powered lights, set up lightweight cots with expensive sleeping bags. Then the rich man set up a large propane heater and connected it to one of the many tanks of fuel he had packed. They sat around drinking hot chocolate and toasting marshmallows. The air started to get heavy with smoke so the rich man set up a small fan to blow the air out the door and things seemed a little better. Soon they noticed that the ceiling of the igloo was starting to drip water. Nothing to worry about assured the rich man, the walls are 2 feet thick and a little melting ice won’t spoil our fun. They settled into their sleeping bags for a good night’s sleep.
One week later the Inuit craftsmen returned to pick up the rich man and his family. They found the igloo had collapsed since some parts of the ceiling had been eroded down to just 2 inches thick. In among the fallen ice blocks and expensive equipment they found the rich man and his family dead and frozen. They took the bodies back to their village and the local doctor filled out the death certificates. It read – Cause of death – “Stupidity”.
Lessons Learned.
Our actions affect our environment.
Our environment is fragile in many ways.
Our earth is like a giant igloo that we share with all human kind.
Who do you want to share your igloo with?
I wonder – when the last human disappears from the face of the earth,
will the footnote of our demise read – Cause of extinction – “Stupidity”.

Barry McKay