Make our planet great again

American politics have always been amusing or infuriating to watch; these feelings as not always mutually exclusive. June 1st, however, seemed like a day of reckoning for all the Trump-voters. Newspapers with ominous slogans splashed across them leave little to hope for. “Trump to Planet: Drop Dead” is one that catches the eye.

Trump’s “America First” campaign is delivering exactly what it promised. The logic and rationality of world leaders, CEOs of Fortune 500 companies, climate experts, advisors and even his daughter fell on deaf ears; In fact, it was only recently that the US president met the Pope, who very befittingly gifted him his encyclicals on the need to protect the environment.

And yet, the world’s (second) most powerful person decided to make America turn its back on the future of Planet Earth.

Here’s a quick overview of the accord:

  • It was signed in 2015 by 195 countries
  • The aim was to curb greenhouse gas emissions
  • Member countries were to review progress, strengthen ties and engage in climate diplomacy
  • The objective was to lead the world by example
  • Only 2 countries did not support it before the US: Syria, a country riddled with tragedies, inhumanities and despair; Nicaragua, “a renewable energy paradise” as quoted by the World Bank, that feels the agreement doesn’t go far enough!

The US is responsible for about 1/5th of global carbon emissions, second only to China. China and India, however, have renewed their pact to stay in the agreement, renewing their efforts to develop their economy whilst reducing their impact on the environment.

Trump’s move seems more to be a rebuke to world leaders than a calculated move for the benefit of the country he represents.  The worrying part of the US’ move is that the country seems to want to isolate themselves from the rest of the world. By rebuking other world leaders.

Despite this, we must not lose hope.

The good thing is that the rest of the countries are still continuing with the accord even without the US, with French President Macron being a strong voice for environment preservation.

Within the USA, Trump’s own advisors are pulling out of his administration in protest to his stance on climate change. Even mayors of different cities are stepping up and vowing to commit to environment-friendly movements and stand in solidarity for the future of the planet.

This is a testing period for the countries part of the agreement – will they have to double/strengthen their efforts without the US and can they keep up without them?

One can only hope that with the US alienating itself from the rest of the world, the rest of the world will unite as one for the greater good of the planet.

Only time will tell. Literally. Check out this carbon countdown clock for a dose of harsh reality:

http://interactive.guim.co.uk/embed/aus/2017/carbon-embed

This post isn’t about a brand really, I know. But it is an important subject. In some ways, it’s about Trump’s brand and how he’s stuck to it. Although contrasting in opinion and in every other aspect, President Macron too has stood by his policies and promises.

For those who are interested in working on the climate change challenge, check out the French President’s initiative here and help make our planet great again.

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I Have To Put My Laptop Where Now?

It’s March of 2017 and Trump is still the President of the United States of America. Among the many – deep breath – reforms he’s brought about, the most recent one, and its subsequent backlash, has caught my eye. The U.S. recently put a ban on laptops and iPads as flight carry-ons from 10 airports in the Middle East.

The world has been going haywire with ISIS attacks, terror threats and mindless killings based on race, colour and creed and apparently this is one of the ways the Trump administration has decided to protect their country – with Britain following soon.

I have mixed feelings about it really.

There’s a lot to think about this new reform and much of the public reaction is negative. Middle Eastern citizens are insulted at the insinuation that their country is full of terrorists; people don’t want to put their expensive valuables in their luggage for fear of it getting lost or stolen; cynics are pointing out that if an iPad could be disguised as an explosive, so could a phone; that it doesn’t apply to any US airlines makes it an odd tactic too; if a terrorist was determined enough, perhaps they could hop on another airline that doesn’t have the ban imposed on them..?

An acquaintance (Facebook friend) of mine even surmised that maybe The Donald vested in US airlines them and is staving off competition this way – ridiculous, I know, but amusing nonetheless.

In all fairness, even though I feel the strategy is a little on the ineffective side, a country’s got to do what a country’s got to do. It is an inconvenience but not an injustice. It’s not the same thing, but remember when restrictions were imposed on the amount of liquid you could carry on a plane? It took a little getting used to but now it’s just part of the routine. In my opinion, it’ll be the same with this new rule.

Amidst the furore over this ban, Emirates Airlines released their take on it and it is really great. Rather than mocking it or making a boring announcement, they decided to look on the positive side and focus on their strengths. They took a bad thing and turned it into something good, not only for themselves but for their customers too.

Excellent thinking and quick action from their marketing team!

Take a look at the video here and you’ll see what I’m talking about:

Stellar work, Emirates!

To my Middle Eastern comrades and all indignant frequent flyers out there, there’s already so much negativity in the world right now; let’s try and look on the bright side of this reform.

 

(All image rights etc go to Emirates Airlines, the illustrator of the comic, and any other concerned parties involved.)

Nike’s Da Da Ding ft. Deepika Padukone

This being my first post, I want to make it a good one. Let’s talk about Deepika Padukone’s new ad for Nike. HOLY WOW. Can I just say – I love every aspect of this ad. The colours, the women, the music, the visual concept, the general badassery. UNGH YES!!! and oh yeah Bollywood’s sweetheart, Deepika is in it too.

If you don’t know what I am talking about, check this out:

Nike has been killing it for a long, LONG time now. But this ad really woke me up. As an Indian woman, this is what I wanted to see. This is what I didn’t even realise I needed to see.

There has been more media surrounding Indian women and the horrific things that happen to us in the last 3-4 years than ever before and for a brand to highlight the importance of women empowerment is crucial. The fact that it showed badass Indian women in it and not just (in fact, barely) Deepika Padukone is fantastic. And showcasing it at one of the most widely televised and highly anticipated awards in Bollywood (the IIFA awards) was pure genius.

In India, sport is not usually seen as an important avenue, let alone a career. Women in sport in India is usually the opening line to a joke. This ad features a host of incredibly accomplished Indian female athletes that I am sure the majority of us (myself included) didn’t know of.

Everyone needs to see this ad and talk about it. The feelings evoked in me as I watched it were a mixture of pride, determination and a hell of a lot of inspiration.

The entire ad was about 3 minutes long and I loved every second of it.

Excellent job, Nike.

 

(All image rights etc go to Nike and the concerned parties involved.)