Sunday, April 22, 2007

Oh, Yes: Earth Day

That's today. As Ellie points out, every day should be Earth Day. I saw a brief clip from a televised interview with Rachel Carson, the author of the pioneering "Silent Spring," in which she wondered aloud about "what is going to happen to our children?" That was 1962. Forty-five years have passed since then. Children born that year are now forty-five years old. Who knows what cancers or other chemical imbalances of brain and body have manifested in their lives? There's still a huge amount we don't know about the effect our modern-era "progress" has had on our species and on the planet Earth, but we know enough to understand that Rachel Carson had foresight that few others had back then. To be sure, there has been progress. The Environmental Protection Agency owes its existence in part to Carson's activism. But how long it has taken us to come to a common agreement with her that we may well be destroying ourselves along with our habitat--and not only, now, through our ignorance, but rather despite the knowledge with which our scientists provide us, through our misguided public policies. And how much longer will we put up with the prevarications of an administration that puts cronyism and corporate profits above the common good? Happy Earth Day, everyone.

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