By Edith Morgan
It’s time to stop abusing our Mother Earth, folks! What we humans have done to the planet that sustains us is pure abuse, and we are waxing closer and closer to the time when finally mother nature will have her vengeance. We are committed to an economic system that can survive only with ever growing waste and expansion.
So we throw away things we have used once, or that we are bored with, or that advertising and fashion say are “passé” We double and triple wrap everything …
… and regularly throw away a huge percentage of our food, either because we are served larger portions than we can or want to eat, or for any of a number of reasons. When we were growing up, my parents would say “Eat up, because the ___________ (fill in your own people) are starving.“ We live in a “throw-away“ society where rather than fix, mend or otherwise repair things, we throw them out and buy new stuff.
Out of sight, out of mind. When we throw it out, it is gone … Or is it? Where does it all go when we dump it? China used to take shiploads of our trash, but as they enter the industrial age themselves they no longer take our refuse. Our landfills are filling up, and we have miles of floating debris in our oceans, plastics that do not just disappear but last for many more years than we live!
We have populated a whole continent, fenced in and laid claim to it all, taken from people who believed that you cannot own your Mother Earth and, therefore, it was easy for White man to just take it all and declare it as ours. And so now we are responsible for what has happened to it and what will be handed over to our children and their children.
I am hopeful when I see so many of our young helping with clean-ups, recycling, re-using, renewing. I am very disturbed that our public schools are not at the forefront in teaching our young every year, in every area, to be aware of what we humans are doing to this planet. So far the only one where we can comfortably survive!
As we go from 2 billion people to seven billion people on Earth … to maybe even 9 or 10 billion humans, displacing and extinguishing species that are part of the delicately balanced ecosystem on which life depends, do we really have a full idea of how long we can continue down this road?
I had hoped that the enforced sequestering of this global pandemic would be seen as a warning, a time for a course correction, a time to decide to mend our ways, and to cherish that which sustains rather than to overpower it.
We can still decide! Re-use, recycle, renew, share and think, think, think!!!
Glass is better, more lasting, safer than plastic, and can be re-used so many times. We can buy vegetables and fruits locally, even grow our own, without big gardens – pots work well. We can walk, bicycle, car-pool and insist that our vehicles deliver 60 or more miles to the gallon – or are free of gasoline altogether. And we can fund or enact research that shows us how to live more respectfully on this planet where everyone can thrive.