Global warming, penguins, and a whole bunch of ice cream

Funny story written by AJ O'Connell

Wednesday, 13 January 2016

Is it hot in here? If by "here" you mean the planet earth then yes. Well that's not entirely true; it's still pretty cold in Canada, Russia, even Iceland. However, records show that average temperatures are increasing not only in the United States, but in the coldest nations on earth. Who's to blame? Scientists believe they have found the culprit; its name is Global Warming.

Global Warming was born in 1896 when a Swedish man named Svante Arrhenius proposed that the use of fossil fuels could potentially increase Earth's temperature. When Carbon Dioxide and other gases (referred to as greenhouse gases) are released into the earth's atmosphere, they become trapped in the ozone layer. The ozone layer is made up of natural gases in the earth's atmosphere. Aside from sheltering ourselves deep underground, this is our only protection from the sun's radiation. As the sun's radiation is reflected off of the ozone layer, heat is trapped within it thus resulting in higher temperatures. The trapping of greenhouse gases are intensifying this process. Basically, the more fossil fuels our cars and factories burn, the higher Earth's temperatures increase.

One of the biggest threats global warming poses is a rise in sea levels. At the top and bottom of our planet rest two massive chunks of ice. After years of research and testing, scientists have come to the conclusion that when ice is exposed to heat, ice transforms from a solid state into a liquid state. This process of transformation is commonly referred to as melting (the same process that ice cream undergoes on a hot summer day). Evidence shows that over the past few decades, sea levels have been slowly rising while the mass of the polar ice caps has been slowly decreasing. Coincidence?

But if the earth is just getting hotter, are rising sea levels necessarily a bad thing? If sea levels increase by less than an inch per year, that gives coastal society more than enough time to relocate itself. When temperatures are high, people love to go to the beach. Rising sea levels just mean that the beach is closer. By the time sea levels are high enough to severely cover land masses, human society will be advanced enough to relocate to other planets. So where's the problem with global warming?

In order to see the real problem Global Warming poses, one must pay a visit to the penguin exhibit at their local zoo. Go to the exhibit, look a penguin in the eye and tell him that his natural habitat is slowly melting away; tell him that in the distant future, all of his relatives will cease to exist. Listen to the penguin cry out in despair and try to walk away without promising you will help his family. This task is simply impossible to fathom; once a human being lays eyes on a penguin, it instantly becomes an object of deep affection. In order to save this simply majestic creature, I propose that we replace our source of fuel with one of the world's most un-majestic creatures, morbidly obese people.

Why are our natural resources being so rapidly consumed on Earth? The answer is simple: morbidly obese people. They refuse to walk anywhere, eat everything in sight, and have no desire to change their habits. If scientists develop a way to convert the morbidly obese into a clean-burning biofuel, we could replace gasoline. If gasoline is replaced, then greenhouse emissions decrease exponentially.

Implementation of this solution begins with a new globally recognized holiday we shall call Free Ice Cream Day. Free Ice Cream Day will take place on the first day of summer every year. This day presents the perfect opportunity to not only relieve ourselves from the warm temperatures, but pick out those select obese people to be converted into biofuel. With their lack of self-control, the obese will not be able to resist the temptation of endless amounts of free ice cream. By the next day, they will have fallen into an ice cream coma. This is when we shall strike. On this day, the earth's military forces will act as one, gathering the masses of fatties and placing them in holding cells, where they will wait for their fate. A person will be determined for eligibility through a standard body mass index test. If a person tests over 30, they will be selected for conversion. This day will also be a globally recognized holiday known as Cleansing Day.

This solution displays numerous benefits for society; in addition to saving the penguins, we are also able to solve the gas crisis. With this new biofuel, the price of gas will diminish to a level it was at fifty years ago. With the two fuels working together, the depletion of Earth's natural resources will take hundreds of years longer, giving engineers more time to research alternative energy methods through solar and wind power. The population crisis is also solved through this method. Overpopulation has been feared on our planet for over a thousand years. The conversion method not only lowers the earth's overall population, it exterminates the most undesirable people in the process. Aside from murders and rapists, the most intolerable people on the planet are the selfish. Morbidly obese people perfectly exemplify selfishness; society is better off without them. In addition to eliminating a major eye sore from the population, more food will be available for starving children in improvised nations.

Another issue to be considered is that of homelessness. Inner city homelessness is rising faster than sea levels or temperatures and poses more of a threat than either one. Homelessness has spiraled into a crisis that is broken beyond repair; more and more homeless people are turning into drug dealers and finding new ways to abuse the welfare checking system. After a few years of converting the obese into biofuel, homelessness could potentially be solved by supplying them with the former homes of the obese. However, after years of drug use and unemployment, some of them may not be able to adapt to society. Those who are unable to do so should be converted into biofuel as well. If a former homeless person is unable to obtain employment within a year of receiving a home, he will be taken to holding cell to be force fed the highly fattening foods our newly skinny society does not wish to consume. Once the man is fat enough, he shall be converted into biofuel like those on Cleansing Day.

Those who oppose Cleansing Day are most likely those worried of the financial burden an entire day of free ice cream could create. I would like to assure these people my confidence in long-term benefits this solution creates. There will, without a doubt, be initial debt, but the amount of money we will spend on ice cream every year will decrease every year. This is because over time, people will learn to not enjoy ice cream out of fear of being chosen on Cleansing Day. With obese people gone, farms will start making a comeback, providing an abundance of hearty, healthy food. This in turn lowers food prices; and with lower prices of food, people will have more money to spend in today's free economy. The debt in the United States alone should be diminished within five to ten years.

In spite of their selfishness, obese people also have loved ones who could be disappointed to see them go on Cleansing Day. This is not much of a moral dilemma, however, because the loved ones of obese people are other obese people. Thus they will be taken together on Cleansing Day, holding each other in arms as they are converted into biofuel. In their final minutes of life they will be surrounded by loved ones. Isn't that all anyone really wants in the end?

In conclusion, through the conversion of the obese into biofuel, we can successfully preserve the natural habitat of the penguins as well as improve our society as a whole. The conversion process could potentially rid Earth of not only obese people, but all overweight people. I do not believe this will happen for thousands of years, however. If this ever happens, we would lose our main source of biofuel. We could still convert human beings into biofuel, but these actions would be morally reprehensible since there is no longer a guaranteed way to point out the selfish in our newly skinny society. Perhaps scientists will discover a vehicle the runs on the power of our hopes and dreams. Maybe we can convert the power of song and dance into some sort of renewable energy. Crazier things have happened in history. Just as a teenager adapts to high school or college, maybe the human race can adapt to the sun's radiation through a gradual exposure to it. Only time will tell.

The funny story above is a satire or parody. It is entirely fictitious.

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