Stephen Hawking: Greed and Stupidity Are What Will End the Human Race

Our planet is fighting for survival and the main culprit for that is no one but the human race that has been increasingly selfish in satisfying its own needs neglecting the basic needs of the planet.

Yet, this behavior must be stopped if we want to save our planet while there is still time. Many scientists and experts warn about the threat of the climate warming, and even if we thought that is far behind it seems that the effects will be felt very soon.

One of those scientists was Stephen Hawking, who sadly died in 2018, fighting all his life a slow-progressing motorneurone disease, the myotrophic Lateral Sclerosis or Lou Gehrig’s disease. Nonetheless of his health he was a genius with IQ of 162 revolutionizing the concepts of physics and science. He was the one who established the theories on the origin of the Universe and the black holes transforming the modern-day concept of the cosmos.

This Cambridge and Oxford-trained scientist left a great mark in the fields of cosmology, general relativity, and quantum gravity. However, he was not secluded in his scientific world, he lived in the real world knowing what is going on and always warning about the future challenges and hardships that await humanity.

He was well known for his wise quotes and numerous inspirational sayings that are still read and for sure looked upon many generations. Although he was fighting with his progressing disease he was also very much concerned about the future of this planet. He stated that the humankind has come to such point that there will be no way in near future how to save our planet. All the ongoing destructive activities will become very soon irreversible.

Here are his thoughts in many interviews that he held during his lifetime:

In the Larry King Now, in 2016, he stated the following:

We certainly have not become less greedy or less stupid. Six years ago I was worrying about pollution and overcrowding. They have gotten worse since then. The population has grown by half a billion since our last meeting [six years prior], with no end in sight. At this rate, it will be eleven billion by 2100. “

In his interview with BBC, Hawking maintained:

We are close to the tipping point where global warming becomes irreversible. Trump’s action could push the Earth over the brink, to become like Venus, with a temperature of two hundred and fifty degrees, and raining sulphuric acid.…

Climate change is one of the great dangers we face, and it’s one we can prevent if we act now.”

Unfortunately, he did not see any progress in the humankind that will prevent the climate change in near future:

 “[…] Evolution has inbuilt greed and aggression to the human genome. There is no sign of conflict lessening, and the development of militarized technology and weapons of mass destruction could make that disastrous.”

If things go at this rate, he believed that the humankind could be saved only if we have a backup planet since Earth would be completely inhabitable. He said:

The best hope for the survival of the human race might be independent colonies in space.”

Hawking warned about the air pollution and its major contributor, the fossil fuel combustion. The air pollution can very much harm the well-being of the people and it has increased over the last years from which suffer more than 80% of the inhabitants in the urban areas thus being “exposed to unsafe levels of air pollution.”

In terms of the higher development of the artificial intelligence, Hawking warned about its misuse by the world governments that are dangerously engaging it in “an AI arms race”:

A rogue AI could be difficult to stop. We need to ensure that AI is designed ethically with safeguards in place.”

The artificial intelligence has brought many good things to the humankind, but if we do not focus on its proper use the worst thing can happen to us:

Unless we learn how to prepare for, and avoid, the potential risks, AI could be the worst event in the history of our civilization. It brings dangers, like powerful autonomous weapons, or new ways for the few to oppress the many. It could bring great disruption to our economy.”

However, even though he had been warning the humanity for the possible destruction of the world, in his posthumously released book named as Brief Answers to the Big Questions, he still believes that there is a hope in the clarity of the human wisdom. Humans will be wise enough and use their innovations to prevent the destruction of the world.