Yes, I know it’s not Earth Day anymore, but there’s been some buzz in the news lately and I just had to speak up… again. Unless you’re living in a cave with no TV, radio, or interwebs; you’ve probably heard that scientists have determined that because of human activity, up to one million species are at risk of extinction within the next few years. In other words, Mother Nature is in serious trouble, and that of course means WE are in serious trouble.
Each year, when Earth Day comes around; someone will inevitably say something like “today is Earth Day,” or even “happy Earth Day.” My response has always been: “EVERY day is Earth Day.”
What can I say? I just can’t help it. Every day really should be Earth Day, right?
Can it really be that we just had the 49th Earth Day already? Holy Carp I’m getting up there. I was 16 when Earth Day was first plopped onto the calendar in 1970. Seems like last week! I wondered what ever became of the Earth Day flag. I found a picture of it on line, but I can’t post it because it has a copyright warning and I’m too lazy to ask permission. However, you can click on this link and go look for yourself:
I’d love to say I’m all warm and fuzzy about the progress we’ve made, but there’s so much more to do. I want to scream every time I see someone with bottled water. Of course, I’m not interested in banning bottled water completely. There are times when it’s the easiest way to get safe drinking water like during a disaster, etc. But most of the time, bottled water is a big fat waste. Many times the source is municipally treated water. In other words, it’s tap water in a plastic bottle (made from petroleum), which gets shipped many miles to a place that already has municipally treated water.
Then you have all the waste from that silly crop way too many people are raising at home: the lawn. Chemicals, water, exotic seed, and machines to make it grow and cut it down are consuming ridiculous amounts of energy and causing unnecessary pollution. You may ask, “so, Mr. Tree Hugger Hippie Freak, are you for banning lawns too?” Well let’s put it this way, I’m married and my beautiful girlfriend likes to have a lawn. So yes, I’m for banning lawns but I’m too chicken not to grow one at our house. Fortunately, though, we’ve made a truce and we don’t use any chemicals at all, but we do mow it. Still, it makes absolutely no sense to me that we humans spend so much effort raising a crop we don’t eat.
As far as crops we DO eat, the chemical companies and large agribusiness firms are doing their darndest to keep a strangle hold in the food business. However, farmers markets are thriving more and more each year, and the customers are favoring organically grown veggies and fruits. At our house, we’ve been growing produce organically for almost 46 years (which coincidentally is how long we’ve been married). I can’t help but think the chemical firms and the large corporate farms are suppressing news reports about organically grown food. Once in awhile though, you actually hear the “scientific discovery” that organically grown food is healthier and much more Earth friendly.
We are getting a little better with more efficient cars. However, we are also still affluent enough that several of us humans choose monster trucks and fancy cars that are not meant for fuel efficiency. Compared to Europe, our mass transit system barely exists. We could conserve a lot of fuel by switching from semi-trucks to trains. Here in the U.S. we’ve converted way too many railways into bike paths. And no, I’m not trying to ban bike paths, but trains are a very efficient means of transport. We’re still way too dependent on fossil fuels, but we’re making progress there (albeit painfully slowly).
And what about turning of the stinkin’ lights when they’re not in use?? Not just at home… Mom and Dad always yelled at us to turn lights off so most of us are pretty much conditioned to do that. Ever go past a shopping mall after 9 p.m. (or later)? The lights are all going full blast. Holy Carbon Footprint, Batman!!
I could go on and on, but here’s one more completely wasteful human activity: WAR. What a huge waste of energy, natural resources, not to mention the terrible toll on human lives. You may ask, “so, Mr. Tree Hugger Hippie Freak, are you for banning wars too?” OH YES!! YES PLEASE!! War, pure and simple, is a form of hell on Earth and must be banned forever.
OK so I’m a dreamer. It’s a dirty job but somebody’s gotta do it (yell about banning war I mean). And I’m sure I’m not alone on that one.
Well folks, Happy Earth Day, Every Day, Every Year. Please do something nice for your Mother (Nature) very soon. She loves you, you know. If you’re not sure what to do, just go to your favorite search engine (mine is Google), and do a search on the following text: what can I do to save the planet You’ll get lots of ideas.
Some of you kids may remember this song. The video is a bit fuzzy, but it appears to be made by Spirit, the same band who recorded it way back when.