People from all areas have tried for years to get the public to react to the dangers oil companies pose to our environment. Regardless of where one stands, Frances Beinecke's article "Trip to the Arctic Refuge Reveals How Far Oil Industry Will Go to Drill Pristine Landscapes" definitely raises one's curiosity. Beinecke's title alone clearly states the author's position and, furthermore, it makes the reader want to dive into it and see what she might have to say on the specific topic. Not only does she provide information concerning oil companies and their obsession with exploiting every bit of land, but she also cleverly builds her arguments against such enterprises. Beinecke's decision to write this article using the 1st person, as in a personal testimony, not only gained her readers' attention, but also their curiosity to find out more about the subject. She tolled the bells for one of the last chances humans have to prove they care for their planet. Her article appealed to a wide range of emotions, while serving a specific purpose: it had the precise task of informing about the actual conditions Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is in.
Wildlife is nothing more but a word in the contemporary society. Large corporations have grown accustomed to making full use of their financial power in situations where they were impeded by diverse laws concerning the well-being of the natural world. Influential players from around the world basically consider profits to be more important than the long-term effects that their actions are going to have on the natural world. By simply going over environmental information about large corporations, one is likely to find that most such companies have experienced significant problems as a result of performing actions that directly damaged the environment. It is thus imperative that people at least stay aware about the dangers oil companies pose to what is left untouched of our planet. In her article, Beineke cleverly mixes personal impressions and powerful images with accurate information in order to pull her readers out of their comfort zone and make them want to take a stand. We depend on what natural resources this planet has and they are limited. Ignoring the topic of preservation is out of the question. The article evokes powerful images that appeal to the reader's sensibility, but it also provides scientific data. Thus, Beineke makes sure that emotion is doubled by reason in her enterprise to get her readers angry when reading her article.
Some might simply argue that Beineke's article will not make any difference. It is just another page in the tone of pages that have been written on the subject of the dangers the oil industry is posing to our environment. Far from being perfect, it does make one want to find out more and see how far the author is willing to take her arguments, though. Thanks to her article, she is likely to make new followers for the conservationist movement. She holds her ground firmly and doe not give the slightest chance over, to the oil companies.
The author's voice in this article is loud and clear. There is little left to interpretation. The intro mimics the first pages of an idyllic image someone is describing in the first person, but the reader will soon find out who the author is. Beineke's authority in the matter is clearly stated. She is not just another writer on the subject, she is someone who has been there, someone who is actively involved in preserving the nature and making sure that people who think like her do not give up. She is thinking about the future of such enterprises and preparing the ground for the future generations to continue the fight: "We have successfully beaten back every attempt to exploit the refuge, but that doesn't mean the fight is over"(Beineke).
In order to really understand the complex condition of the natural world, one needs to focus on areas the artificial character the present-day consumerist society has not yet touched. This is exactly why Beinecke discusses about the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in her article -- she knows is going to get a direct and immediate response from the public as a result of learning about one of the last 'virgin' natural places in this our hemisphere. "It is a place of untamed abundance, from thundering caribou herds to towering mountain ranges to free-flowing rivers." (Beinecke). By having readers understand the difference this makes in today's landscape, the writer wants to have them turn their attention away from the typical scenery and focus on a much more beautiful place -- one that they are more likely to see on National Geographic or Animal Planet than in real life. Places such as these are promoted as a location that needs to remain as unique as it is and Beineke points out in her article that the only way this can be achieved is by preventing oil companies from going over the point of no return.
As pointed before, in her article, Beinecke addresses both the heart as well as the brain. She takes out the ace from her sleeve right from the start: the beauty card, thus proving that she is well acquainted with the fact that people typically react to instances when beautiful things are in danger. Most people feel some sort of connection to the natural world and most people are acquainted with the importance of keeping nature alive. No one likes pollution and it is trendy to have at least one idea about how to make the world greener.
Beineke does not appear to have any illusions about the motivations people generally need in order to start acting instead of just watching the news. This is why she uses the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge as a main topic in her article. For her argumentation, she picks up a place she appears to know well, a specific place in the U.S. There is another ace in her sleeve: the patriotism card. She expects her ideas to have a particular influence on readers and to eventually be successful in having people consider that it would be wrong, even unpatriotic of them, to allow an oil company to destroy such a beautiful place in their own country. People are practically pushed to get actively involved in a conflict they might have never considered before as their own.
In addition to addressing the image of one of the most 'natural' places in the world, the author also concentrates on having her American readers, in particular, acknowledge the role they can play in this matter. The fact that the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is located in the U.S. means that Americans are more likely to be able to get actively involved in the conflict involving the wildlife haven and oil companies. "It is also an icon of American conservation. People have fought to protect this place from industrialization for decades" (Beinecke). This is meant to have readers identify with the location. This is how they will feel an important piece of the puzzle. Beineke's article makes people want to feel responsible.
The article appeals to every bit of consciousness the American people might have. It appeals to their predecessors, thus to their inheritance and it also appeals to their responsibility for future generations. The American people as a whole have yet to express their opinion concerning matters involving natural resources that previous generations of Americans have struggled to protect for future generations. "Millions of ordinary citizens -- most of who will never travel to the refuge -- raised their voices and said: Some places are too special to drill" (Beinecke). This is meant to make readers feel that they are part of a whole and that their position as American people makes it somewhat mandatory for them to say something concerning the critical condition of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. Thus, thinking that some economic entity might jeopardize their children's right to know there is natural beauty in this world a few steps away from their home, people get angry.
Most people today have, at a certain moment in their lives, asked themselves if the environmentalist issues are right or wrong. Beinecke also makes use of politics in order to keep the reader focused on the civic component of the matter. When picking his leaders, the American citizen must vote in total awareness of situations as important as the one presented in Beineke's article and she is playing her third ace: that of politics. Reminding people that they are a part of a greater group, Beineke awakes in the American people another type of responsibility: the need to vote according to their conscience. This is ultimately, the only way to preserve democracy. When financial power threatens to destroy it, people first become with themselves for not having taken a stand before and then, they become angry with those who Beinecke denounces in this article.…