The Bottom Line of All Lines


We hear Triple Bottom Line these days, a new mantra for corporations and non-profits as they declare themselves equally committed to planet, people and… profit.

However, say skeptics, how does one measure planet and people impact? They are not “profit” centers, after all.

Do people and planet follow healthy profits, as in philanthropy, or, do “people and planet” concerns guide product and service decision making which then generates the profits and benefits the entire global economy and…yes…the eco-systems too?

Perhaps this is the time to simplify the matter…To say the “M” word. To acknowledge the true bottom line of all lines is something called the Moral Imperative.

Peter Sinclair, a world-renowned videographer, was the featured presenter at an event this week in Grand Rapids, Michigan called ” This is Not Cool” – a climate change 101 session punctuated by video clips of the world’s foremost scientists on the topic. It was sponsored by Local Futures, The Sierra Club, Fountain Street Church and other local chapters of national organizations.

I asked my son, Issac, a 12-year-old, seventh grader, and member of his school’s Media Team to join me. He graciously did, perhaps our of curiosity, but more because he wanted to see an example how video is used to present compelling stories that don’t preach but simply and plainly relay the facts. We were not disappointed.

What I came away with was a convicting spirit that indeed climate change is no longer reversible and that our only hope is to slow its progress.

Translation – sea levels are rising faster than most coastal cities and civilizations could have imagined a decade ago.For all of us…the evidence is here…the writing is on the wall (of glaciers) and breathed hot into our lungs by more frequent, more devastating wild fires.

Isaac and I were drawn into the urgency and the insanity of how we got to where we are. We left with a sense of foreboding, yet some flicker of HOPE.

I clung to one of Sinclair’s points, as he conclude his multi-media talk.

“Climate change finally resonates as a moral issue,” Sinclair believes, adding, we’ve got to frame the climate change issue as a “moral, ethical argument.”


As the Native American saying goes, “What we do today will impact to the Seventh Generation!”

The question then is, “Do we, in our time, realize how to frame the moral argument?

If yes, is there enough “moral fiber” left in our generation, and for that matter around the globe, to care? Or, have we eaten the processed, fiber-less, empty consumer’s life for so long that we do not recognize the fact that “globalization” is nothing more than global “corporate-ization!”

For my son Isaac’s sake, and all our children down to the Seventh Generation (should we as humans on this planet survive so long) I will ride the moral imperative horse until I drop…and when I do, my hope is that another rider takes my place.

For more from Peter Sinclair, Google “Climate Denial Crock of the Week”

Yours truly, and always,

The Unlikely Student




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