Australia burns and homes are lost. People's lives are destroyed and communities hundreds of kilometres away are disrupted thanks to smoke pollution. Children cannot play outside for long and sports teams are calling off games.
I wrote an editorial recently calling for an end to the culture of ignorance that's so prevalent in the world today. The idea that you're the only one that sees the real truth while the rest of us are all suckers to some vague scam.
The 'scam' of climate change. You know, the one by the Government to make more money, or so some Holden Commodore told me on Facebook.
When 11,000 scientists sign a climate emergency declaration it's hard to take someone who has literally no scientific qualifications seriously even as a joke anymore.
What qualification does some old mate on Facebook have to speak on climate science? Would you accept their opinion on literally anything else? What about that lump you're worried about? Ask old mate.
More from the Mudgee Guardian:
Maybe they could cure that disease for you or perform keyhole surgery or explain how a solar panel works? Old mate's got it in the bag.
Where does this culture come from? What could we possibly stand to lose by looking after the environment, the planet we live on and each other? Are that consumed by selfishness some of us cannot imagine admitting they're wrong?
People pine for the 'old Australia' - some nebulous time in the past when 'things were better', whatever that meant and when there were fewer worries. The obligations of generations before ours was to leave the planet better than when they found it.
I worry that when our generation yearns for a similar 'old Australia' that they will talk about what the Great Barrier Reef used looked like or what it was like when every bushfire season we weren't confined to our homes thanks to the toxic levels of smoke in the air.
'If you stick your head in the sand long enough, you'll suffocate' as the old saying goes. Just like some people are now, except sadly it's not their fault.