Chapter 12 of the enchanted braid was kind of a follow up to chapter 11. In chapter 11 Osha explained to us how the different practices of destructive fishing had taken its toll on the reefs in the thousand islands region of the Philippines. Chapter 11 explained the social problems of why it is so hard to save the coral reefs in the area. The only way to really save a reef fishery is to get the fishermen to honestly care.
Great things are never done by just one person, but with a group of people the possibilities are almost endless. For some time now scientists had just tried to tell the island fishermen that over fishing, blowing fish up, and squirting some poison at them is really not good for the reef. Sadly a resounding “Who cares is usually the answer the people give the scientists.” Think about it would you actually put some stupid underwater plant/mineral/animals survival above you and your poverty stricken families lives. Easier said then done right?
“Unless the fisher folk are empowered in the truest sense and given alternative livelihoods, then the remaining resources will not be preserved and sustained.” Said Filipina Sotto. I thought that this quote is a great summery for the chapter because it tells you that one: people are only gonna help you out with saving the reefs if you have a way to take care of them while everything is working itself out. Like in the Apo scenario there was really not gain for the fishermen until a decade later. Most people are not willing to wait an entire decade to catch so more fish when they barely are surviving as it is.
is a really good example of how great things can be when a community can come together and get behind something bigger then oneself and really make a difference in the world. I believe that saving a reef is not all about the reef but it’s a lot about giving those people who live off it a way to a better life. Each and every person on earth was created for a reason and from the dawn of time it has been our job to take care of the things that we have “And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds of the air and all the creatures that move on the ground-everything that has the breath of life in it-I give every green plant for food.” And it was so.” (Genesis 1:30-31) God
has given us everything; we decide what happens to it. If we want to keep the beautiful coral reefs of the thousand islands alive and healthy then we need to keep our brothers and sisters there alive and healthy as well and saving the reefs will just fall into place.