Would you press the button to make humanity go extinct?

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Warning: this post contains ideas that some people may find irritatingly optimistic, as well as some big, long-term ideas that some may find ludicrous. Please set your mind to “open” before reading further 🙂

I often hear people entertaining the thought of making humanity disappear from the universe because, as a species, we are causing a lot of suffering, to ourselves and other sentient beings and the planet. One thought experiment goes like this: if you could make humanity painlessly disappear with the pressing of a button, would you press it? Or, slightly reframing the experiment so that you can make an abstraction of your own responsibility: would you stop someone else from pressing the button?

button

In the animal rights/vegan movement, more people seem to be in favor of human extinction than among the general population (just my anecdotal experience). That’s not hard to understand. People become animal rights activists and/or vegans because they have learned about the horrible suffering humans inflict on animals, for food, clothing, research or entertainment. It is tempting to think that the planet would be a better place without Homo sapiens, and given that in our thought experiment, no humans would really suffer (it’s just a matter of an instant, and no humans are left to deplore the new situation), we might say: where’s the harm?

Now, from the viewpoint of the notoriously tricky field of population ethics, there’s a lot of stuff to say here. Apart from the consequences for other species and the environment, we could talk about whether the universe in general is a worse or a better place with humans gone. If there is, on average, more value than disvalue in humans’ lives, it might seem that the net result is negative. But if there’s more misery than happiness, this could be good. We could also think about the value of future people being born. They will obviously not be born if we let humanity go extinct. I won’t go into this minefield here, because I do not have strong opinions about these issues, because I can’t seem to wrap my head around them, and mainly because here I want to touch on some other factors.

These are the reasons why I would not press the button.

1. Humans may do a lot of damage, but they’re also wonderful.

We all know the horrors that we cause in the world: to other people and annually to 65 billion farmed animals (excluding fish). We screw up our environment and use a lot of finite natural resources. There’s no need to write a long and depressing list here. However, we can also focus on all the good that we do. Never in the history of our planet – or, as far as we know, the universe – has there been a species that invests so much time in making things better for others. Look at the millions of people active in the non-profit sector. Look at those trying to help the weakest and the poorest. Look at all the beautiful things we do. Seeing Homo sapiens in this light, it becomes really problematic and unfair to just call us a shipwreck of a species that only does damage.

2. Humans still have a lot of potential to improve.

In many ways our history is just beginning. Moments ago we were mere apes in trees. We developed culture, learning and education only recently. We – in the richer countries at least – only recently managed to create comfortable environments where we no longer need to worry about food and shelter, so that we can spend more time on other things. Violence is declining and this era is, counterintuitively to some, the most peaceful era in history (read Steven Pinker’s The Better Angels of Our Nature). We’re still expanding the circle of our moral concern. We’ll probably have to work less in the future and will devote even more time to creating change for ourselves and others. And there is the promise (at least for techno-optimists) of future technological advancements that can help us have a huge positive impact on ourselves and our planet.

3. Humans might be able to help other species further down the road.

In the future, given more moral growth and technological improvements, rather than having a net negative impact on other species, our impact could become net positive. Arguably the biggest source of suffering for animals is nature/the natural condition. Animals die by the billions because of hunger, disease, parasitism, the climate, predation (see my post The extremely inconvenient truth of wild animal suffering). Maybe in the future, we can limit some of this suffering. The same applies if at some point in our more distant future, we bump into sentient life on other planets. Chances are there is suffering there, and if by that time we have advanced enough morally and technologically, we may be able to help. Of course there is the chance that some other species in our corner of the universe is already at that level, thus making our own progress less important. But certainly in the event that we’re the only “advanced” ones around (in this region of the universe), it becomes very important that we survive and grow to help. It would be a pity if everything we have and everything we are was lost, and the universe would need to restart with another species to reach our level of development. Lots of time and lives lost.

As you see, I’m thinking a bit ahead. And why not? Some will believe this is speculation and science fiction that has no relevance for the problems and suffering at hand. But if we don’t destroy ourselves, we have to assume we’re going to be here for a long, long time still. And in that time, a lot is possible.

We’re on our way. We’re children still, growing up, getting better. It’s going to take ages or millennia, but we humans might just turn out to be the best thing for the universe. Let’s not press that button just yet.

87 thoughts on “Would you press the button to make humanity go extinct?

  1. Thank you for this interesting article. I am torned between these 2 sides of thinking; wanting the distinction of the human race to give the animals and this planet peace and time to heal and at the same time knowing all the good a human being is capable of.

    1. well, the thing is, i don’t think animals have peace with or without us. with us, they maybe may have more chance of some kind of peace in the long run

      1. I get your point, but when seeing and knowing all the horrors humans are inflicting on the animals it is difficult to embrace the idea that they would not be better off without us. As the state is today one is wondering, can it get any worse? But its important to remain positive and to believe in a better future, that thing can and will change for the better, that is the reason why I’m vegan. The work you do together with many of us is the hope for the animals.

      2. I really can’t be so optimistic. The idea that humans might eventually make other animals’ lives better strikes me as being as far-fetched as the idea that the domino effect will eventually make everyone vegan.

        If I have a disease, I don’t let it fester in the hopes that it one day might get better. I have it taken care of, or I suffer and possibly die. A button like the one in your thought experiment sounds like an antibiotic, to me.

    2. I would happily push it and I’m not vegan. I just hate humans and want them all gone.
      They have no potential and certainly have no role to play other than as fertlizer and food.

          1. The root of our problem is the survival instinct. Survival instinct = psychopathy = stupidity = every problem on earth.
            I don’t see any way to change or modify this instinct that is in every living thing in the universe. And I don’t think any living thing anywhere in the universe will ever be able to get past this paradox and create a lasting, advanced, peaceful, civilization.

            1. There is one way(coming to a mathematical understanding of the concept of “Infinity”, and its consequences, tends to quell the survival instinct), but it requires a level of intelligence beforehand that most people dont have, and it also causes some pretty crazy existential depression, so in the end its not very feasable.

          2. Agreed! Homo sapiens should become extinct. All the harm we’ve done to the biosphere far outweighs the good we have done or could do. We need to get lots of people together to figure out how to make us go extinct given that most humans will fight against it.

  2. Thanks for the warning. 🙂

    Have to admit there are days when I’d push that button in a heartbeat. And given my generally pessimistic/misanthropic nature, there are times I’m more than glad to be old enough that I won’t be around forty years from now to witness the continual destruction we humans inflict on others. But, that also means I won’t be able to witness possible massive change in attitude and behaviour that could benefit all species. So I guess my answer for now is no, I wouldn’t press it myself, but I also wouldn’t stop anyone else from doing the deed.

  3. To play along as if such a button existed, I would not push it, but I would not prevent another person from pushing it. I am clearly not an optimist though 🙂

    Human beings have an odd evolution in comparison to other organisms – even among other populations of humans. Imagine if the Native Americans had progressed as rapidly as the Europeans. Would the outcome of the settlement of North America have been much different if the Native Americans had advanced weaponry? Many people treat the Native Americans as great stewards of the Earth. I think that would have not been the case had they been able to reach the industrialization stage as the civilizations slowly advanced. Regardless, it’s easy to applaud and/or denigrate human beings since we created the setting for our existence over centuries (language, religion, science, math, politics, philosophy, etc.).

    Ecologically, we are nothing special on this planet. Aside from detritus (which even then we deprive the decomposers through incineration and embalming), we don’t contribute much although we certainly benefit from all of the biological and ecological support services. If humans were to go extinct, aside from domesticated animals (which we create), the only organisms that would go extinct along with us would be a species of head lice and a couple demodex mites that live on our hair follicles and in our pores.

    I think it’s a slippery slope to over-glorify our progress and assume that we have the potential to improve the conditions of wild animals – especially when we caused most of the suffering through deforestation that is necessary to make room for growing human populations. Currently, do dogs, for example, have it much better than wolves? Certainly my dog lives longer, likes technology like the car she rides in to go to her favorite spots, eats processed kibble and anything else, sleeps in a climate controlled house on a fluffy pillow protected from predators and parasites for the most part! In the context of the situation that we are dealing with, with the over-population of domestic dogs and cats, certainly it makes a difference, but in nature dieback exists for a reason – it’s simple carrying capacity and natural selection. I would argue the wolf has it better than the domestic dog, regardless of suffering, purely based on numbers. We can understand and justify nature because it’s not a rationalizing organism, but we really cannot justify breeders, whether puppy mills or small, pure breed dog breeders. So we created a problem that we are now tasked to address and solve – with huge expense, resources, and energy. Couldn’t one argue that if we had just left wolves alone that we would not have to spend billions of dollars to rescue, care for, and euthanize domesticated dogs? Obviously, we have to deal with it because it is a real issue, that currently exists, and it does no good to dwell on what should have been done so long as it’s not repeated.

    A lot is certainly possible depending on how long human beings will exist. There is no magic number for carrying capacity, so it’s all speculation. We can assume suffering will always exist and that humans will create and solve problems that we thus created. We’ll also continue to advance medicine to increase lifespan and populations, but not in astronomical proportions as some people imagine.

    I’m not anti-humanity – obviously, I’m using a computer, I was not crippled by Polio because I was vaccinated, my mother and I survived birth when I would have died pre-1900’s, etc. I don’t shun technology because I pretend to be a Luddite whose job was eliminated by the “machine” or live “off-the-grid” trying to make my living off the land to make less of an impact. I certainly take refuge in wild areas because I like getting away from cities, mundane work, and people (especially during election time here in the United States – ick!).

    1. The bottom line is that most humans are selfish and self serving they care nothing for the problems of there own nevermind the animals or environment the sooner we are gone the better it will be for the planet and animals.

      1. Then you’re caring about animals. Thats why you want to destroy it.
        We care what we love. And that is NOT our fault.

  4. Another wrench: what happens to the animals in our homes, shelters, farms? Unless they are magically transported to a place all their needs will be met, pressing the button creates more suffering for the animals currently alive, locked away, unable to escape, and destined to die of starvation or thirst. If they would somehow be as well off as they would be in the wild, we don’t get to check out. I cringe at the thought of my dogs left all alone, with no one to let them out of the house or yard (they have a dog door; but the gates to the yard have locking latches).

    1. Well, in my imagination, if such a button would exist, the possibility to, before pushing the button, arrange for all animals to be set free, would also exist (“magically transported to a place all their needs will be met”, like you say). Both of the options are equally unrealistic so why just not use our imagination. In any way, we already hit the button every day by destroying the planet and its inhabitants slowly but surely. And according to the movie “Demain” not so slowly…

      1. well, that’s YOUR thought experiment, and it is different from mine. it’s not because they’re both unrealistic that they’re the same and are instrumental in uncovering the same values and assumptions 🙂

    1. I would happily accept myself being included in the humanity extinguished by the button press. My own death frightens me far less than what human beings do, every day.

      1. But would you push your personal button now? Since veganism is based in the moral choice and action of the individual, why not extend that individual morality into at least eliminating your own awful human impact by eliminating yourself.

        Folks, this idea of pushing a button and removing humanity is like genocide at the level of species-cide. Why not introduce global compulsory sterilisation instead – at least people would get to live out their own lives? After all, what could be wrong with people being detained against their will and operated on without their consent? How would that be worse than murdering them (which pressing the button would be)?

        My view is this – as humans we all have a basic duty to other humans, not because other humans are necessarily nice, not because we will never be in conflict with other humans but because we rely on other humans. It won’t be the rainforest or a non-human animal that might feed you if you are starving, it’s going to be another human. Sure, it could have been humans that caused your suffering in the first place, but as I said humans ain’t necessarily nice.

  5. Wonderful article which I hope is widely read and shared. If we could tune the button to take out all the misanthropes and pessimists, then I’d hit it with a hammer. 😉

  6. There’s to many “might”, “could” and “potential” in there about possible human development. It’s not going to happen, at least not fast enough, so I’d press the button.

  7. Hey Tobias, nice piece! What do you think about the risk that humans expand suffering to places where currently there’s no sentient life? For instance, prototypes of insect farms that could work outside earth are already being developed.

    1. yes, of course there is that risk. not just re. insects. i mean, spreading just *ourselves* to other planets at a moment when we’re still too primitive (or when the environment is too hostile) to guarantee a decent level of enjoyment for all beings is a big risk in itself. i would prefer we only spread among the stars (or planets) when we have reached a certain level of moral maturity also.
      so i guess you can just as well be pessimistic in all this, but i think i choose to be an optimist 🙂

  8. If I have such a button, I’ll use it as a form of blackmail. See how much humans are willing to pay me for their lives. Hell, I might tinker with it in such a way that if someone injures or kills me it will go off automatically. Humans haven’t changed, they just got better at controlling their urges and hiding their sins in general but deep down they’re still “monsters” who will take advantage of their fellows if they know they’ll be able to get away with it.

    1. Nice to read somebody with similar views. It’s just to bad such a button doesn’t exist cause I would press it without hesitation.

  9. Seams like we keep finding excuses why not to press the button…egoistic parasitic destructive virus, this is who we are as species..a virus killing its host…And we keep celebrating birth of the babies, all wrapped in pinky happy chappy accessories..Its another consumer born!! Monster human..that will make more humans that will consume more plastic, cut more treas, eat more cheese from tortued cows held in captivity…we are disgusting pretending to be nice and conciuous…Stop having babies!!

    1. They will never change, my dear. They are souless, empty hylics.
      Read the Sumarian Creation. Or current 218. This world was never meant to be created.
      We are, as you said, parasites.

  10. I’m 27, from all I’ve learned about humanity I have a strong belief that humans are the absolute evil on Earth. I’d press that button at this point with no second thoughts.

  11. Alluding to the supposed benefits of humans continuing to exist, we can’t really do anything other than imperfectly attempt to solve the problems that we cause by our very existence. We don’t add any value; merely make a mess and then clean up part of it. Therefore, it’s a no brainer to me, I would hit the button. But not only for humans, but for all sentient life. Sentience is the problem, not merely human sentience,

  12. All humans aren’t absolute evil. I would guess about 30% of humans are evil, the Birther KKK types, and about 15% of humans are genuinely decent people, and the rest go with the flow no matter if that flow is genocide, mass rape, or even child molestation. The real problem lies in the fact that most humans are soulless lemmings with no real capacity for empathy or honesty. All the human obedience experiments show that 85% of humans are lemmings who can be easily goaded within minutes into committing genocide level atrocities. Humans will disregard and even denounce obvious truth to fit in with their reference group like desperate witless rodents.

    The probem is we have too much mechanical intelligence compared to our social intelligence. This means demagogues can easily create violent extremist groups to exclusively serve the demagogue’s desires and whims. Some people’s morality tends to be infnitely morally relative such that when someone else has darker skin, they are accused of being foreign born in Africa, but when the reference group leader is a known and infamous child molester, suddenly child molestation is being compared to behaving like Jesus, but only for the reference group elitist. Birthers have virtually cheered on Roy Moore molesting a 14 year old American. And what do the rest of us moral people do about it? Nothing because society is structured so that elitists can violate anyone and anything without compunction and without the slightest punishment. If Roy Moore molesting a 14 year old is worthy of Birther applause then what act would Moore supporters think crosses a bridge too far? Roy Moore said the victims of 9-11 deserved to be murdered by God because Moore doesn’t like gay people having any rights. Roy Moore suggested that America’s slavery days were America’s best days. Our darkest and most evil chapter in US history, Moore supporters celebrate as being a utopia ..so long as it’s “others” hanging by nooses in front of burning crosses, others forced to him out of burning skyscrapers.

    Too much of the human population is downright evil and there aren’t enough decent folks to stop the evil doers from committing atrocities. We are a species that could save Earth life from a comsmological disaster, but instead, humans are jeapordizing life on Earth to further pamper already over-pampered billionaire sociopaths. The evil doers among mankind could pose an existential threat to other species on other planets if we gained enough technology to become an space faring species. One terrorist nut bag flies one small spaceship to a double digit percent of the speed of light into a planet of “infidels” and life on that planet could be made extinct. The only way we would not be a universal threat to life is if Birther types simply did not exist, or were cleverly bred out of existence. Instead, globally, the Birther/sociopath type of sycophants are increasing in numbers while moral people who defend the meek are murdered by the evil doer powers that be. People who follow the Golden Rule are slowly being eliminated from the human gene pool by design so that the infinitely corrupt elitist sociopaths can manipulate, defraud and oppress the masses with greater ease. It’s why Hitler want after “liberals’ with the same zeal as he went after Jews.

    I think the better way than simply a button to make humans disappear, too many messes left around to poison the planet, would be to press a button eliminating human fertility. That way all the humans alive can live out their lives and within 100 years we could wind down our species to leave a small as possible footprint for the next sentient species, the one that could save life on earth from the dying of our star or large astronomical impact. We have far too many evil dupes in the population compared to those who would fight the evil dupes and the evil dupes have far more gall than the defenders of mankind. How many German citizens just went about their day whole train loads of Jews were being transported through town to death camps? Far more Germans ignored the atrocities than the number of people who defended the Jews by stopping the train and holding the scumbag Nazis who were participating in genocide accountable.

    Amd we can forget about humans evolving Golden Rule morality. Humans commit the same atrocities throughout history from thousands of years ago to today. I have been to a US mega church whose pastor ordered the tens of thousands of church members to buy guns because the time for Conservative Christians to commit genoicde on liberals is coming soon, that they are the Sword of Jesus and after they murder every last liberal, liberal Christians included, then Jesus will return and reward the genocidal criminals with glorified bodies immune to aging or disease or discomfort. The county sheriff is the head of security at this church so forget the cops coming to our aid, they will be coming to commit genocide as well. This happened less than 10 years ago, same lame propaganda as the Nazis used, the same promises of a gleeful genocidal utopia, same abominated religious justifications, same animal different time period.

    Humans are evolving into Birthers as tyrants murder non-Birthers by the millions, soon to be billions.The same people who dupe themselves into believing Obama was born in Kenya and that the Parkland shooting survivors are actually crisis actors and that Planet Pizza was a den of child molestation (child molestation being bad when liberals are falsely accused, but holy when Birther elitists are molesting American children). These Birthers are inheriting the Earth. Humans who follow the Golden Rule are the ones clutching their throats being murdered by poison gas or by barrel bombs. A Syrian version of a Birther has a much longer lifespan than the Syrian Golden Rule follower and that is playing itself out across time and space.

    The end of humankind would mean an end to genocide, an end to mass instuitional rape, and end to extortion via torture and threats to family members. Birther types have no compunction, no consistent sense of right and wrong, for they are infinite moral relativists. The good things decent people do will always be overshadowed by evil doers acts of villainy and people who won’t lift a finger to stop an atrocity. Tens of thousands of years ago humans probably had the capacity for reason above lemming-like obedience, but consider the lives lost in the Crusades, the Inquisition, evil doers murdering people who follow the Golden Rule from our earliest recorded history. And what we will be left with is sociopathic alpha apes and witless sycophantic beta apes who will exterminate anyone who possesses a consistent moral code.

    Evil doers also breed like rabbits as per their orders, so the promotion of Birthers reproducing is happening full steam ahead while good people and their children are being killed. It’s why Birthers are so adamant about disallowing rape victims the right to abort the rapists baby, because that rapist’s baby is most likely a natural born Birther. However, if reproduction gets in the way of a Birther elitists profits then Birthers are fully in favor of abortion, like that famous anti-abortion eltist, Tim Delay, who fought tooth and nail to outlaw abortion for American women whole he supported a brothel in the Marianas forcing the woman whom they kidnapped into sexual slavery to have abortions against their will. Tom Delay’s wife was paid 900K dollas with the promise of then Speaker Delay to order the FBI to stop investigating the sex slave traffickers, and what major “pro-life” campaign had the slightest problem with Delay’s moral relativism? NONE. Pro-lifers, by their silence support women being forced to have abortions against their will so evil doer elitists can keep the sex slave revenue streaming like a roaring waterfall.

    Where in the bible did Jesus say it’s perfectly acceptable to force women to abort to make corrupt elitists filthy stinking rich? Where in the bible did it say Roy Moore molesting a 14 year old girl against her will is behaving in a holy manner? It doesn’t. All Birther types’ version of religions are buffet religions, pick and choose in the most hypocritical manner and self serving manner imaginable without the slightest bit of guilt. We can’t beat those people. Humans are on their way to evolving into the worst kinds of evil doers and hypocrites.They’ve made fantastic inroads into calling every genuine act of evil their side commits as being ‘fake news” while they spin the most seditious and pernicious of terrorist emboldening lies and call it real news. Truth is utterly irrelevant to those kinds of humans and their belief in anything is solely predicated on whether it fits the narrative theor reference group are trying to spin. They are the very worst kind of liars, the bearers of false witness.

    Most of us can understand someone lying to get themselves out of trouble, but those who spew lies to incite thousands of death threats and dozens of terrorist attacks are the very definition of evil. Good human beings will become extinct and then maybe humankind will devolve into stupid but violent tree swinging monkeys without the need for language. Since Birther language has no truth in it, it can’t have a consistent meaning either.

    If you want to know what the future of humanity will be like, just look at Trump and his Birther minions. Look how Birthers applaud child molestation, applaud bigotry, applaud seditious lies, applaud sexual assaults so long as the perp is a Birther and the victim is not. It’s not just ignoring an inconvenient unsavory truth, its framing an ugly disgusting truth as an act of holy contrition. There is no crime that Birther elitists could commit that wouldnt be reframed by Birther sycophants as the holiest of moral behaviors, not child molestation, not slavery, not terrorism, not sexual asaault, not even high treason. And merely speaking this truth could earn the speaker a few thousand death threats against the speaker and even their family. I would wager my last dollar that the parents of Parkland shooting victims have received at least ten times as many death threats for telling the truth of what happened than Roy Moore has received after local knowledge of Moore being an unrepentant sexual predator became nationally known. We can see from that one case that Birthers will survive even thrive in such a corrupt system while non-Birthers and their families will be murdered. Consider how Birther government figures will not call the KKK a terrorist group but they call the animal rights animal acitivist a terrorist for videotaping a Birthers gleefully breaking the law by torturing farm animals.

    I would rather see all of humanity go extinct than to have humankind devolve into infinitely moral relativist fascist sycophants. Birthers and their evil actions don’t deserve to be the future of humanity, but that is sadly the irrefutable case. Hopefully their stupidity and corruption will mean Birther humans will never leave Earth, but instead, rot in their own filth until they too become extinct by their own evil ways.

    If Birthers somehow bootstrap real science and stumble into becoming a space faring species, I hope an extraterrestrial species will save the galaxy from Birthers and wipe Birthers off the face of of the universe. Imagine how many MAGA hat wearing terrorists would just love to bomb a peaceful alien species into oblivion for the sheer thrill of committing genocide. I imagine all of them would and the Birthers are the ones now ruling most of the world.

  13. Yes, humans have potential to improve in regards to how they treat non human animals, but in the end, the animals would have still been better off if humans never existed. Improvement of life for chickens entails giving them a patch of grass or killing them more painlessly, but they are ultimately still prisoners and still dying for human benefit. They can’t roam free or live without the danger of being exploited for humans to be able to eat meat. Sure we’re “improving,” but what we’re really doing is trying to clean up the enormous mess we have made, that would not be there if humans didn’t exist to begin with. In the end we still view are species as different and therefore as rightful rulers of the earth and exploitation of other living beings for our fulfillment. Yes, we help other humans, but humans in general already have decent lives. We’re helping people who are impoverished to have a more western lifestyle, which is the problem to begin with. The better lives people have the more the environment is degraded and the more animals ultimately suffer. So I wouldnt say that humans helping other humans is for the collective good, but ultimately goes back to only looking out for humanity, regardless of the consequences for everything less. These days people argue that we are improving because we are using “sustainable” practices. People consider this equivalent with caring about the environment, but in reality it’s that people have finally caught on that resources are finite and that we would run out if we continued to squander them like we do. If forests were infinite, we’d have no issue with killing trees so that we can continue to have Starbucks or make disposable plates. Humanity is only making a compromise for self preservation, not because they care about the environment. This is not to mention the fact that humans kill animals for entertainment and unnecessarily for food, given that they can go to a supermarket and buy meat from one of the millions of animals we harvest. Or the fact that people don’t recycle despite wide availability of a means to do so. Ultimately, any “good” that we say we are doing is basically cleaning up our centuries of disregard and exploitation. This is more of a responsibility than it is “good.” So yes, if press the button in a heartbeat.

    1. Long and descriptied but accurate anybody who is willing to see humanity for the plantariy infection that we are is good in my book.

  14. Nope. Humans are a mistake that should have never evolved. They’re a worthless, evil, terrible species. Always have been, always will be.

    >> Humans may do a lot of damage, but they’re also wonderful.
    The damage and suffering humans have caused in the past, do cause in the present, and will continue to cause in the future, is exponential compared to whatever good is hiding beneath the breadth of human disgustingness.

    >> Humans still have a lot of potential to improve.
    Nope. All current attempts at social progress are either met with majority backlash or are just unable to make a dent in society. I have zero faith humanity will improve in any meaningful ways, and even if by some off chance they do, it’s going to take a looooong time, as in centuries or even millennia of undoing human awfulness. I’ll be dead by then, so why should I be happy that humans may be a slightly less evil species centuries from now?

    >> Humans might be able to help other species further down the road.
    LOL Again, any progress towards animal rights and stuff will only be make noticeable societal changes by the time I’m dead. I’m vegan so I don’t personally contribute to animal suffering, not because I believe humanity will ever change.

    And as far as aliens, go… Yeah, I pray for any life-bearing planet that has life less technologically advanced than us. History repeats itself, and humanity is a disease that will destroy any planet it infects.

  15. Fuck that humans are shit. Just show me the kill switch and I will throw it on humanity in a heart beat with pleasure. The only thing we can depend on government sellout hypocrites for is to create radiation,atomic,biological,chemical weapons,machine guns,prisons,medicate us to death,steal our fucking assets and children. And throw there threats around saying you had better do what you are told or the above circumstances will become part of your life.Government say they support justice, human rights,freedom,freedom of speech anti slavery the abolishment of discrimination and prejudism. Government dictators dictate there will be a world free of murder,genocide,free of arson vandalism and theft. But government are the exact opposite of everything they promise. You’re not to kill but government do it for a thrill. Equality is all fine and dandy as long as a government and judge get to assess your mental health and judge you.because Government have to be superior to the majority that must be inferior. So much for equality. Government are the exact opposite of everything they promise to be.in other words major fucking liars along with all humanity that support the cunts because humans are sooooo stupid. Shit country from hell Canada invaded my life when I was 5 years old and burned my father’s house tried to kill me and family,sank his house boat,stole a 1963 Corvette from my uncle,stole a 1973 GMC truck from my great aunt. In 2016 the cops invade my home and stole my name change certificates and bill of sale to my 1986 z28 streetrod camaro. Can’t prove ownership of my camaro anymore.the bullshit fucking psychiatrists and judicial worker shit all over my files. Is the ultimate excuse government use to deny me justice,human rights,freedom,freedom of speech,honor,valor,dignity,pride. The philosophy of government is if they slander me enough,telling lies. With hopes to enslave me,or frame for my complaints about shit country from hell Canada they don’t have to take accountability for themselves .I’m am a very famous hated person in society world wide. I have solid black tattoos all over my back neck head lips and arms. Lie number 2 is fuck race from hell humanity refuses to admit that I am famous. This is defamation of character fuck country Canada is victomizing me with. It to is a lie and a crime fuck nation Canada and this shit government are victomizing me with.the mutiny fuck race humanity have waged against me is a crime. But if I complain to a government shit creature.this fucking ass hole country and government tell me I’m delusional and imagining that I am famous. Meanwhile the government cunts like to slander me calling me criminally,insane liar and a faggit.problematic situation of humanity and there fucking government liars is me and humanity hate eachother.I would not get humanities slimy DNA on me. Nor would humanity let me get my DNA on them. Because me and humanity are enemies.I have not had sex in the past 20 years and fuck mouth Canada and this shit government seem to think it’s alright to sexually harrass me spill shit out of there faces saying I am a faggit.breaching LGBTQ rights and sexual harrassment are crimes humanity and this shit government love committing against me. In actuality given that I am victim of entrapment and sabotage and a conspiracy of silence to rob me to say a damned thing in opposition to the fate I can’t escape rapped in red tape what will become of me. Sticking my dick in a mouse trap would be a far safer and more pleasurable sexual experience than having sex with a human with the political shit humanity is using to govern and control my sex life with. So why the fuck would I ever want sex with a human peice of shit again.well I don’t. But still fuck race blows smoke about my sexual immoralities that have not happen once over the past 20 years.. But the government’s view point on this is if they call me enough dirty word they don’t have to give me human rights,justice for the crimes Canada committed against me and my family. They could possibly frame me but would prefer to use me as an expendable slave at some shit paying job.Meanwhile with every thing government and fucking human liars have said about me my family cut me out of the wills.I inherit no farm land from my grandmother,great aunt,cousin,father,and uncle. I don’t inherit my father’s construction company,and used car dealership. Nor do I inherit my uncle’s fas gas franchise and 6 duplex. Brilliant government solution beat me off to a $15.00 per hour job and use me as a stepping stone.while my family dump 10,000 times more than what I’m expected to make in a lifetime of slavery,out of my inheritance into this economy. While my fucking government and country pocket my inheritance and commit 10,000 crimes against me. And humanities excuse to refuse me justice and human right is go out and call me dirty words. Well fuck you and your government Canada. You’re are a worthless useless,stupid country. That I hate more than Hitler hated Jews. And I don’t want to be judged by any shit government of nuclear murders. Which is in a nutshell how all government’s shit creatures stole owner ship of all humanity and the planet during world war 2. And said you better do as your told. Surrender your mind,voice,and thoughts to the government supreme beings.In addition I never asked any government cunts to come into my operating room the day my mother gave birth to me. Forcing my parents to commit fraud against me. Saying to my parents you must create a legal fiction name for me and put it on a bond,stock,copyright stating that my parents sold me into bondage to be owned by government.my parents also signed the citizenship papers for me to have Canadian citizenship forced on me.I was just a baby when my parents spoke on my behalf stating I agree to being stolen and owned by government.I never asked government to come into my operating room when I was a newborn baby screaming at me they own,and control my mind,body,and soul on the day of my birth.screaming shut up do as I’m told,don’t have sex,obey the law,pay my bills,get my ass to slavery.I have no use for government stupidity. It’s the government’s fault they shared the weapons of mass destruction with terrorists. The government’s invented the fucking things and used them in war first.hydrogen and hydroxy and the machines to make these fuels were were invented during world war 2. Hydrogen and hydroxy are made from water. They’re are very environmentally friendly fuels. It’s easy to make hydrogen and hydroxy and the machines used to make these fuels. Water will never run out like fossil fuels.you shouldn’t have to pay more than $3000.00 for hydrogen and hydroxy to fuel your cars for a lifetime. But government insist on ripping you a new ass hole selling diesel,gas,propane at an insanely high price. Hydrogen and hydroxy are the most logical choices to fuel you cars. But government want to rip you off instead. And if government incur the same wake of disaster and damages to there reputations that I have as a result of them calling me dirty words.good! I hope government fall. They should give me the right to choose to fire all government from governing my life to shit on the ballot forms at the elections. But they don’t. I would be happy as fuck to be abandoned on a deserted island, never to see another human ass hole for the rest of my days.but that’s humanity and this fucking government and there need to attach themselves like a wart to my ass. They promise no discrimination ,prejudism and then go out and breed it against me with there blasphemy. Humanity especially government are hypocrite,liars and the exact opposite of everything they promise. Justice,human rights,freedom,freedom of speech are dead and the truth is not a defense.

      1. I personally think ‘love’ is just homo sapiens propagation method of getting humans to stop hating each other and destroying long enough to mate and therefore reproduce. Lol.
        And yeah, I’m another button masher for sure. None of this hokey ‘humans are wonderful’ (with lame examples of said ‘wonderfulness’) is gonna convince me that we’re a species worthy of inhabitating this beautiful planet.

    1. Keep telling yourself that if it helps you sleep better at night cause lying to ourselves is what humans do best we are a people that exists only to serve our own selfish desires and needs love is just one of the tools used to get to an individuals goals faster anybody who thinks otherwise is sad and deluded.

    2. I’ve felt intense love for many, and promise you that pushing the button is better, for the sake of love. The quality of life that humans have is so poor, and the quality of life they create for animals and plants is so painful and wretched, that humanity will sigh in relief when it realizes it is finally over. There’s no need to kill out of hate. One can kill out of love far more efficiently. The red button is a love button – that is why it is red.

  16. I can’t help but notice the “humans do so much good for other humans” reasoning. It stands out. Once again it shows only the egotism that humans have. “Oh look, we help ourselves” Yay, bravo. Our potential is limitless… When it comes to depravity and destruction. I pose this question; what have humans done that is great- not taking into account achievements that only benefit us or our egos? Great as in, for all of life! For the earth, that gave life to all living things. There may be small groups out there that attempt to make a difference for a better earth, only to be snubbed out by a mass populas that could care less. This planet is the only thing we need to survive, and we are killing it. Anyone who differs with that opinion is a brainwashed, indoctrinated narcissistic human empathizer. Hope is an illusion our minds play to convince us that what we are doing will be okay. I wouldn’t push ” the button” as that entails some type of bomb that would inevitably destroy everything… Unless it’s a reset button, then yes. But more so, there needs to a virus created that only effects humans and we all fucking die. So be it. We are a cancer cell that has gone malignant. Fact.

    1. I agree. I love art and music and think it’s a great and beautiful thing that humans create… But… It’s only great and beautiful to US. It benefits nothing else. Our beautiful architecture, our Great Wonders, our inventions that show off our intelligence… Again. It only benefits our species. And even if it used to help animals/nature in some way, it’s always just cleaning up problems we caused in the first place. So yeah, humans create some cool things but look how much we destroy.

  17. I can’t help but notice the “humans do so much good for other humans” reasoning. It stands out to me. Once again it shows only the ego that humans have. “Oh look, we help ourselves” Yay, bravo. Our potential is limitless… When it comes to depravity and destruction. I pose this question; what have humans done that is great- not taking into account achievements that have only benefited us or our egos? Great as in, for all of life! For the earth, that gave life to all living things. There are small groups out there that attempt to make a difference for a better earth, only to be snubbed out by a mass populas that could care less. This planet is the only thing we need to survive and we are killing it. Anyone who differs with that opinion is a brainwashed, indoctrinated narcissistic, human empathizer. Hope is an illusion our minds play to convince us that what we are doing will be okay. Hope is a religion. Religion is insanity. I wouldn’t push ” the button” as that entails some type of bomb that would inevitably destroy everything… Unless it’s a reset button, then yes. But more so, there needs to be a virus created that only effects humans and we all contract the virus, and seize to exist. So be it. We are a cancer cell that has gone malignant. Would any other creature share our opinions of ourselves? Would the plants and mycelia?

  18. In. A. Heartbeat. What we do to each other and other living beings–and we’re supposed to be intelligent and morally reasoning animals–is unconscionable. Humanity is a cancer. Wherever we go, devastation follows. I’d eradicate us all in an instant. Of COURSE we’re in love with ourselves, so this is an unpopular opinion. I’m sure if syphilis or cancer could voice their/its opinion, they’d be in favor of continuing. And spreading.

  19. I’d still press the button cause when all else fails and its normal then anything on the planet dies out also I want to see what species is going to be smart enough to see our ancient ruins. Also because I was sent here for a reason

  20. “One thought experiment goes like this: if you could make humanity painlessly disappear with the pressing of a button, would you press it?“

    Painlessly? No.

  21. Hm. I’ve worked in a wildlife park for years and I can tell you that there’s a reason we humans are such selfish bastards: we come from the animal kingdom.

    I love animals and will do anything for them, but animals are absolute bastards to each other. Give them the chance and they’ll pull the rug out from under each other. Elephants will utterly destroy an entire forest and cause extinctions by themselves, like hippos will also remove fresh grass for antelope to share. The most brutal place on earth is a forest, where trees and shrubs compete for the sun, leech and parasite on each other mercilessly. And don’t get me started on the insects. Its not harmonious at all. Its a war. The only reason why animals don’t go on a rampage is because evolution has selected the cautious ones to survive, because fighting is also dangerous to them. Evolution and nature are horrendously harsh, and its no surprise that it is has come to be like this, considering the harsh planet that we live on, and the even harsher universe just 100km above our heads.

    Now considering we were borne form this hell, its amazing that we can be peace-loving most of the time. Sure, the occasional war, but that’s nothing to the constant death on the savannah. The only difference is that we’re smarter, and more effective at killing… so when we do it, its pretty devastating. Humans are at least aware of the damage they’re doing, and are in fact stopping themselves gradually from destroying their habitat. this article is proof of that. They need to, it’s their ass if they don’t. The earth doesn’t care, its been through much worse. The Permian and Cretaceous extinctions were just a few of the big ones, but many MANY species went extinct without a big bang. Extinction is normal. It sucks for the species, but its normal, that’s how life operates. Life comes back to fill the gap. Its like a bush fire or volcano destroying a large piece of land, only to become lush and fertile afterwards.

    Honestly, our plight for saving animals and being kind to them is only for ourselves and our guilty conscious. I’m down with it, but it is selfish. We need a thriving ecosystem to survive, we need cute and furry animals to look at, we feel guilty… but nature doesn’t give a rat’s ass. One meteorite and all of our worries, including Panda bears, are entirely gone. That is nature.

    The fact that there is such a thing as a biosphere is a freaking miracle, and that intelligent life came out of it is even more amazing. It is so amazing that we cannot even comprehend the odds and therefore think we’re so special and therefore some kind of guardians of the galaxy or something, when in fact we’re just animals… very clever ones. Our behavior is nothing special. Put a bengal tiger in an african park and it will murder entire herds of antelope just because its not used to such an abundance of prey. They’re just programmed to do that.

    If we really want to save the planet, we first need to cut the crap and come to terms with why we should be doing it: for ourselves. We need to protect animals because if we don’t, we’ll kill our own habitat. Nature enforces harmony, and if you don’t respect it, you’ll kill yourself, just like an elephant will kill a nature conservationist because they happened to accidentally stray into their personal space. Nature is ruthless, we need to learn humility and realize that even with our intelligence and virtuous opinions, nature really doesn’t care about you. You need to adapt… or die.

    On the other hand, would I press the button? hell yes. Humanity is so full of itself, thinking its above animals and that they should protect them. Let humanity go extinct so that animals can carry on peacefully killing each other… in harmony.

    Again, I love animals, but they’re anything but cute. I respect them because they mean business. We come from them, we should learn from them and understand that we’re no better, and that its a freaking miracle that we can even comprehend the notion of helping another species.

  22. Hand me that button.
    Before you do so, kiss your ass goodbye.
    People are bastards.
    The fewer bastards in existence the better.

  23. I would press the button, twice.

    The argument that other species need us is superficial. We need them. By domesticating the dog, we lost our VGN, or Jacobson’s organ that allowed us to detect minute smells and pheromones. The dog is our sniffer. We have given up our animal instincts to computers, and our hearts to fake progress.
    JR Tolkien would cry at this world.
    Rodents who have learned to use us for easy food pickings, would revert to normal. Cats would lose their purr because that is only made for humans to trick them into loving and protecting them (trust me, it works like a baby googling at you). Insects would take over the homes All fungus, trees and plants would take over the land. New life would spring into being through this new world. The water and earth would begin to heal.
    Humans were suppose to be the Ents, the “good shepherd(s)”, but our neocortex, the thing that separates us from our animal selves, and that allows us to be creative. It also allows us to be liars, murderers, greedy, conniving, power hungry, and willing to destroy our own world. No other species we know of on this planet tries to kill itself unless under our control. For every animal saved, two seem to go extinct. Every feel good moment of a dolphin saving a drowning kid, a gorilla carrying a wounded child, a dog saving its owner or even another dog, there’s a guy kissing his girlfriend after they slaughtered a giraffe or an elephant.
    We had our time. Now it’s their turn, again. Which world do you think will be cleaner, prettier, and more magickal? Yes, I would press the button, or put Thanos glove on, and snap my fingers out of existence.

    1. It is March 2020, and I never felt my words so apropos. The Coronavirus is decimating our species. The air actually smells better, and more animals are coming out from hiding in my neighborhood. All is quiet on this western front*.

  24. The idea of destroying existing human life, however painlessly, is hard-wired to be emotionally disturbing for most people (myself included) even if rationally justifiable. So if the thought-experiment was changed slightly so that instead of pushing a button that extinguished existing humans, you were able to somehow alter the course of evolution so that humans never evolved in the first place – I wonder how much that would this change how people viewed it. I’d be interested to know what you all think.

    1. yes, never to have been is obviously different then stopping someone when they are already alive.
      still, i would hold on to my argument: i think natural selection doesn’t provide the best algoritm for happiness and wellbeing, and many creatures in the wild are often struggling and suffering, also without humans. So my hope is for one species to rise above that and reach technological and moral maturity to help all the other species. If that’s not us, we have to wait for millions of years for another species to rise to that occasion.
      I’m aware many people will thing this is naive science fiction, but I don’t think it is, if you take the long view and assume that life might be around for millions or even billions of years, and is not just here but on many other planets

  25. Hi Tobias,
    Have you heard of Antinatalism? If so, what do you think of it?
    I’m referring to philosophical Antinatalism that considers all procreation (human and animal) to be a negative thing.

    1. The problem that I have with the normal version of Antinatalism (as I understand it) is that if everyone were to suddenly stop having children it would condemn the existing population to great suffering as the population aged and society eventually collapsed, which sort of defeats the purpose of Antinatalism which is preventing suffering. So we’re stuck with running on a treadmill that we can’t ever get off. A softer version of Antinatalism that I personally subscribe to is what I described above which is it being preferable that humans never existed in the first place. Not very practical though!

      1. One day there will be a generation which will have to suffer mass extinction, prolonging the cycle would merely be selfish and destructive. What’s 7 billion people in the face of all the sentient life which was and is to come?

        Also, that logical (philosophical) type of antinatalism is also called Efilism.

        1. Seems that only self-hating folk of Western Euro heritage desire such a biological cataclysm. I know such a person myself- Badflower her fav band
          (Vegan espousing political-ethnic cleansing espousing-
          ”Kill em all song relating to Trump supporters.’ Vile and disgusting filth.

      2. I’d like to think that humanity could come up with a way to plan for the population decline and make it easier (or maybe even pleasant?) for the last generations. Advances in AI/robotics may make this more feasible.

      3. “that if everyone were to suddenly stop having children” is not a vector of attack against the philosophy, as antinatalism does not suggest everyone should, in fact, stop having children immediately. Even if they did, the harm caused per result would far outweigh the potential harm in future generations. If one truly understands what it is about, one would realize this.

        The very immediate prohibition of baby-making is not what antinatalism advocates. Philosophers aren’t that out of touch with reality.

  26. I would, as they say, smash that button. Would there be peace? Maybe, maybe not, but there would be no one deciding it, it would just happen as a natural course of events without, like leaving a flower outside, it may rain, it may not but it will be the natural course of things without interference. May we live long and die out. At the very least people need to adopt A LOT more, I dont get why people have an obsession with their ‘Genes’, I know all the environmental arguments but people never seem to listen anyway, so think of the kids living and breathing and eating already who need families but people choose to get bloody IVF and waste all this money instead for their Genes rather than adopt even gay couples who have more of a reason some may say to adopt still choose to get a family members egg or sperm for a surrogate instead of adopting and just want to create more human life. Uncontrolled growth, if we were cells, we’d be cancer

  27. I owe humans /especially government nothing for stealing,owning, kidnapping and wrecking every second of MY life. And every life form on the face of the planet is subject to the same or worse. I never invited government into my operating room on the day of my birth so they could scream in my ear. We owe and control your mind body and soul, shut up and do as you’re told,get your ass to slavery, don’t have sex, pay us 10,000 times more than we pay the people in wages or pension. Swallow the poisioness chemical drugs doctors prescribe to you. Or be sabotaged. I didn’t choose to be a citizen of Canada. My country put a leash around my throat. All so the king life sucking, soul sucking tape worm politicians that crawl in my bowels and eat my life can sit on there thrown with there bullshit God complex and lies ruling and judging the people. But still ain’t proved God exists. Did’nt the word liar come into every humans head when they think of there religion & aliens every thing and every tall tail humans represent.And when you kill a man you’re a murderer, kill many and you’re a conquer. May as well be a conquer when survival is futile. Button pressed! Let me at them I’ll splat them with pleasure!

  28. Without a moments hesitation. Seriously, fuck this species. I used to think that our art and science made us worth saving, but no longer. It’ll be sad for Shakespeare and Einstein to be forgotten, but if it means that pollution, exploitation, greed, racism, misogyny, xenophobia, homophobia, fundamentalism and capitalism go as well, it will be worth it.

  29. I very much wish someone would push the button and destroy humanity. It is the only hope for the planet and all other forms of life.

  30. hell ya start from me ….no button…… i wish some one create a virus which attack human reproductive system so that they wont b having any kids and with in 100 years all humans will b vanish from earth

  31. If such a button existed, there’s no power on earth that could stop me from pressing it and I wouldn’t have to think about it for even one second for all the reasons expressed by others in this thread

  32. I would be pressing that button sooooo much and so fast until we would all cease to exist! No question about it and I wouldn’t be even giving a millionth of a millisecond of a second thought to it! If only such a magical device to end humanity would be invented. One can only dream and hope!

    If anyone really pauses for a second and thinks about it… what’s REALLY the point to our human existence and to anything that we humans do?? Where there is a beginning there will eventually and undeniably be an ultimate end to humanity. Be it through either our own personally caused ignorant ways of demise through self destruction (nuclear war, climate change, over population, etc..). Or.. Eventual dramatic outside factors such as the fact that the Milky Way galaxy will one day cease to exist. Nothing does last and live forever! Especially with the dramatic rise in population, our planet will not be able to one day sustain the quality of life for everyone! Maybe now is the start of that beginning of what is to be the further unfortunate future for many humans. That’s when more dramatic conflicts will undoubtedly arise with more people competing to exist! Ever see what happens at a store on a Black Friday when inventory supplies are low, everything is on sale, and there are hundreds of people lined up outside? Chaos! All because most people are ultimately selfish in their thinking and reasoning.. Just Me! Me! Me!

    If everyone stops and thinks about that idea for just a second! Many people live for just the heat of the moment and make impulsive decisions based upon their own selfish decisions. They just don’t care to think about what kind of impact their decisions will ultimately have on others or the planet and all other living creatures. Many humans take things for granted and in the process act selfish and hostile and create many unnecessary problems worldwide. All while not stopping to think for just a while and to realize one true fact that none of us can ever cheat… This being that… We are all going to die someday soon eventually!

    So please people.. stop being a$$h0le$ to everyone and to the planet. It’s also ok to not breed and overpopulate a planet that is already soooo scarce with resources for others. Bigger does not always equal better! I am single and I once raised a good question to a friend on why he wanted to have kids.. His reply was that he “wanted something to be left behind after he is gone”. My reply was.. Go to the bathroom.. do what you need to do.. don’t flush the toilet.. same kind of effect to that “logical” way of thinking. Something would certainly be left behind.

    Life is based on survival.. In order for you to have something better, someone else somewhere has to give up and pay for it. So what’s the point of experiencing life and going through all of the BS along the way? When we die physically everything dies with us!

    So someone please create that magical stop human existence button and give to me! I will put it to great use for us all! I certainly promise! 🙂

  33. I am not an optimist nor a pessimist. I am a realist. I know the bright side and opportunities of human beings. Yes i agree on what you say, yet in realistic view, good people and empathetic people are out-numbered by these apathetic, selfish, greedy, and prideful people. I know that we have the upper hand to take care of nature and animals. Yet only few has that mind set. Most people value development. They are willing to destroy nature for military facilities, etc. They are willing to annihilate animals just for meat. There are more i want to say, but this won’t handle it. I have suffered depression and anxiety, and became psychotic, by trying to convince myself that there is still good in humanity. I still believe it though, but everytime i come across of human cruelty to animals. My mood would change drastically to lunatic. Oh how i wish the world ends now!
    I really don’t wish that humans go extinct, but like i said good people are out-numbered. And as what you have said, we can give them a better life-the animals, since nature cause them more troubles. But that is way too impossible to happen, look at these people who loves money. They are willing to destroy everything just for their own comfort and entertainment. Also, it is hard to unite the world. We all have a different perspective in life. Unless if you brain wash them, there is a possibility. But in reality, only God can save nature, animals, and us humans.
    Pardon me, if my comment is jumbled. My neighbor has been keeping a dog outside their house tied up for 2 days now. Only eat once. It pains me so much that i can’t do anything. I am only a teenager, and this is a province place. No such thing as animal control and people here eat dog meat. Making me wish negatively again against humanity.

  34. Kurt Vonnegut said in one of his last works that the epitaph of humanity should be “They Didn’t Like It Here”.

    The trends don’t lie. Humanity is destroying the planet at an increasing rate. But with the growing clamor over COVID-19 defenses cramping the bar scene, humanity clearly is too impatient to wait for the final destruction of the human habitat. They want to rush into the waiting arms of the Coronavirus and be taken away from life as fast as that can be arranged.

    It looks to me like the final Darwin Award needs to be awarded to the entire human race – if there’s enough time.

  35. I’m with all of you who would press the button without any hesitation. However, it is also important to me that cruel humans, all of them, should die very slowly and extremely painfully …for them to be winked out of existence is not good enough for me …they must pay for their unbelievable cruelty, depravity, perversion, sadism. For homo sapiens, this would be quite a high percentage, much higher than many might want to admit. I’m willing, even hoping, to pay my share for that which I owe, and right now would be a fine time to get started. But please may the button include this caveat!

  36. I would push the button. I would prefer one that wiped out all those with ambition or as i call it greed averice and selfcenterednes.
    As long as i can remember i have viewed the human species as apes that got just intelligent enough to destroy the planet and not smart enough to move past its near parasidic nature.

    In most walks of life there are those that are non-nominal they think about the consiquences of their actions both in short and long term ex:
    Step on the gass to get that orange light or just coast and relax.Buy biological/local and more expensive or buy cheap and wholesale.

    For most examples the harder choise means sacrificing something for yourself. I myself have few wants or needs, i never had that “oh i want that” feeling. But this is for me both a bit of nature and nurture. If you are born with a high achivement desire and your parents (like most do) enforce that then you are bound to have a harder time doing the universally “right” thing.

    It has been said time and time again. If you want change to happen begin with yourself. True enough, if you dont do anything yourself then nothing changes. The problem is that for the most part our sociaty is structured in a way to hinder this. If you dont push your agenda or upstage your fellow worker or executive you get overlooked for promotions, and to get ahead takes the “i want, nay I deserve that” mentality. You dont see masses of americans voting for an independant that has not made any overt effort to appeal to the masses. Nor do you see a free thinking vegan yogi lead a tech corp as Ceo (unless he became the former after achieving the latter)

    Historicly leaders become leaders because they think they know best, have power/money have drive and form a network of powerfull connections. Exactly the person you dont want leading anyone if your primary goal is balance and peace.

    But lets say we have our ideal leader. She/He is forced to lead by election he/she did not chose. They prioratise enviromental balance over comfort, peace over military, eqality over greed and will ensure that any major decision made is in the best interests of the 50 generations following having a healthy planet and happy lifestyle.
    Basic first steps to ensure a good stable environment.
    Lets make this a world government since the current political climate is to convoluted for broad ideals anyway.

    Extermination of cirminal element. your 12y old steals a ..whatever. Lethal injection. (after vetting if it was the parrents that failed the child or the child that failed, if the former kill the parents and reeducate the kid) 2-3 generations of that without anyone abusing the system and crime is all but gone.
    Ban all non sustainable farming or production methods.
    Set a cap on the ammount of children a couple may have (1 for now 2 when stable environment)
    Create a standardized quality of life. If you study hard and work hard your only payment above the standard living quality is that you have personal sadisfaction.
    Put the non-workers to work. I am ofcourse talking about the type that could work but do anything in their power not to including abusing a welfare system.
    Terminate non-viable humans. Yeah you love your kid with down syndrome but the rest of mankind does not need the drain and the tainted DNA in the pool.
    Etc etc etc.. Some good things anyone can get behind, and some things that make some folks skin crawl.

    Non-acceptance of these or other ideals for a stabalized human condition would lead to civil unrest and any responce justified or not would only make things worse.

    The problem is as always human nature.
    Ambition and drive are needed for progress, but those same qualities lead to greed and hatred.
    Would an emotionless state work, i supose, but the end result would not be worthy of existing if its all bland robots.
    I do not think an actual balance can be made by passive means. the human species would need to both individually and collectively recognise all our flaws and force ourselves to work against our own nature to achieve balance. (ergo. choose leaders that CAN lead but do not want to and have no personal agenda) willingly abstain from indulgances and personal benefits over others. Reject “power” for its own sake and embrace the lesser lifestyle.
    The only people that i know of globaly that have achieved any mesure of this are budist monks and even they tend to falter every now and then. And a planet full of monks isnt going to unlock the secrets of the universe or achieve anything but “spiritual” heights.

    It all boils down to what we are. Animals. Our primary goal Procreate. How to attract a mate- Be the most desirable. wealth power and good looks gets you a long way in that department and so people, Rob, steal, lie and flatter their ways over the backs of those they can get on top of to do this. Usualy deluding themsleves intoo thinking that this was because they enjoy it or liked it or they deserved what they got.

    As for our fellow animals. I like my meat. I also like to know that the animal i eat did not suffer while alive. Basicly Treat others like you would like to be treated.
    And lets not kid oursleves If plants had audible voices and would scream in pain the cow would still eat it regardless, and it does not care if the plant it is chewing on will die from its actions or not. We have the advantage of understanding the plight of a fellow creature and as such if we want to believe ourselfs to be inteligent I persoanlly feel we need to be aware of how we act toards those that we subjugate. Wether its food pets or beasts of burdon but not abstain from this any more than a liones should stop hunting baby gazell.

    And since I do not think that mankind as a whole will ever be capable of overcoming its nature I would push our hypothetical button. And lets be realistic, creating a virus to preform the action of said button is becoming easyer and easyer so eventually some bio engineer will see the light and create a virus to do just this, if not at the least a good persentage reduction. I do hope to see it happen one day. When i first heard of the “lethal” covid strain I had my hopes up but sadly its mortality rate and persistance is far too low for me to consider it an actual “killer” virus. But fingers crossed ladies and gets for our friendly virolagist that can get a 100% infection 10 week incubation and 70-100% mortality virus/prion/bacteria/spore in play at several major airports in a single day.

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