Taku's Blog(翻訳・創作を中心に)


TOEFL Writing 練習

Question: Some people think that human needs for farmland, housing, and industry are more important than saving land for endangered animals. Do you agree or disagree with this point of view? Why or why not? Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer


 Every life is precious. Any species other than us humans are also inhabitants of the planet Earth and therefore their life should be cherished—which might seem to be obvious to most people. However, no starving people would even come up with this idea; no people who have lost their homes would agree with it. We have to be materially rich in order to be able to consider the situations in which other species are; we have to feel secure ourselves before we cherish other creatures.


We have established civilizations where we pursue our happiness, by co-operating with each other, by felling trees and by agonizing, exploiting and killing other species or even making them become extinct. Therefore, on the possibility that we might prioritize the planet Earth’s welfare, I am pessimistic. Of course we should try hard to conserve the environment, but the reason should be that we should enhance our possibility of survival as a species as well as our welfare. If an endangered species is a pest that eats crops grown by a poor farmer in an underdeveloped country, of course it is not the pest’s life but the farmer’s that should be saved—if an environmentalist still insists on the co-existence of the pest and the farmer, I will not trust him. We have to be materially rich to a certain degree before we care about happiness of other animals.


Similarly, I do not think that a homeless person, even if she has a puppy as a friend, is or should be environmentally conscious. Who can demand that she be when she has no house to live in? Only when we feel secure can we symbolize such a big idea as the one of the planet Earth or Mother Nature, where not only we but also other species depend on each other and share the destiny.


Of course, our interdependence with other species, the fact of which was discovered not long ago, cannot be denied. Yet, to me, the question of whether saving natural habitats of engendered species might be more important than human needs is, especially if posed by a wealthy environmentalist, nothing more than a form of hypocrisy, brought about by lack of imagination. (370 words)