I think this was in the making ever since I came across my first Greenpeace activist in Hiranandani in '98 or '99. It was outside (what is now) Haiko. At that time I had no clue about climate change or whaling or whatever - I just saw a bunch of these guys had set up a little stall and were trying to get some attention.
But at getting attention they failed. Miserably. One lady infact mistook "Greenpeace" for "green peas" and inquired about it, only to turn away in a huff when she realized her mistake.
At that time, my schooldays, I didn't get pocket money or anything. I remember taking 100 bucks from mom to buy something big, and with that purpose I was in Hiranandani.
So here I was, looking at these youngish activists, probably college students somewhere. I kinda just felt bad that everyone was ignoring them and that's what prompted me to go and see what they were pushing.
They gave me a few pamphlets and told me long stories about Greenpeace, about Rainbow Warrior and their efforts to stop whaling. That's when I recalled a Discovery Channel show about them and all the stuff they did. (I used to be an avid watcher of the Discovery Channel. Back then it was really great!)
At that time, I thought what they did was really gutsy and a little stupid. But I agreed with the message. As I went off, I felt a little sad that no one here seemed to care about any of this stuff.
I ended up making a Rs. 50 contribution towards Greenpeace. Rs. 50 is like nothing, but back then I could buy a Frankie outside school for Rs. 10, and I got that Rs. 10 from my parents only once or twice a week!
So that was it - a little kid makes a tiny contribution. It was surely forgotten moments later.
Now to be honest, I don't support all the messages that greenpeace puts across. I also think that invading nuclear facilities is not right, infact it is downright stupid.
But there are 2 issues where I think Greenpeace makes perfect sense – climate change and defending the oceans by protecting marine reserves. They may be sensationalist, but they are doing something.
For too long, I didn't join because of the differences in thought. But now that I think about it, that was stupid. I have now joined because there is enough in common.
Lets be frank – unless we enact change now, the world is going over the brink. The Earth will survive well enough, but we will not. Closer to home, India is projected to be one of the hardest hit countries by this.
Now I know you're gonna say "climategate" and "scandal" and "only a theory" and all that bullshit. Get a life. Some researchers may have cut corners, but that does not mean all of science is wrong. To me, it shows that some organization somewhere (supposedly funded by Exxon according to some sources) paid good money and organized the resources to hack into research organizations, and proceeded to scan emails and release the ones that seemed controversial.
Indeed, if there was cutting of corners by researchers, I'm glad that someone revealed it. All it means is that we need to take the raw data and re-examine it.
Anyhow, I ramble on for too long. Bottomline, we all need to get involved.
tl;dr I joined Greenpeace. I don't agree completely with what they say, nevertheless I will volunteer for events in India. You should sign up too.