Monday, March 17, 2008

Defending our country, defending our planet.

I'm right now swamped at work and other parts of my life feel like a jet streaking across the sky shedding pieces of its fuselage and excessive green house gases. Life can be dog eat dog kind of experience, where being green, or hell just being a good person can be hard in order to make it day to day. Sad but true, being green can feel like cutting off your nose to spite your face. OK, I'll cut out the cliches and quotes at this point, exhaustion hinders the originality muscles a little bit.

To that end, our acts of more environmental living is an actually an act of defense, of preserving our self interest. It may challenge our economy, cause adjustments, force us out of our rut. Often our acts of environmental protection have no direct relationship to our economy, our realpolitik or our day to day. However, it does remind me of another time when all expenditures were tied to the defense of our country. In 1969, Physicist Robert WIlson testified in front of congress and he was asked what exactly did a project have to do with defending our country. His reply is now legendary,

"It has only to do with the respect with which we regard one another, the dignity of men, our love of culture. It has to do with: Are we good painters, good sculptors, great poets? I mean all the things we really venerate in our country and are patriotic about. It has nothing to do directly with defending our country except to make it worth defending."

Do being green necessarily benefit us directly? Does being green help us have more? Maybe not, but by living more effectively it makes our world worth having.


At 10:31 AM , Blogger arduous said...

That was beautiful. Thank you for that.

At 2:02 PM , Anonymous CindyW said...

Well said!

Do dolphins, whales, polar bears or gray wolves directly and financially contribute to my daily existence? Not really. But I am not seeking to eek out a living. Merely knowing their existence makes my life a little warmer and fuller somehow.


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