Words of wisdom for Earth Day
On April 22, 1970, the first Earth Day, 20 million Americans launched the modern environmental movement. Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring in 1962 sowed the seeds that triggered a national environmental consciousness.
Today, 48 years later, we stand on the threshold of environmental disaster. President Trump slashes environmental regulations that have given us clean air and clean water, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt marches to the beat of Trump’s drummer by denying consensus among scientists, and Secretary of Interior Ryan Zinke seems unacquainted with the basic concepts of natural resource conservation.
Here are a few thoughts from some of the great minds of our time for the rest of us to ponder:
“For the first time in the history of the world, every human being is now subjected to contact with dangerous chemicals, from the moment of conception until death.”
“The idea of wilderness needs no defenses; it only needs more defenders.”
“In nature there are neither rewards nor punishments – there are consequences.”
“To keep every cog and every wheel is the first precaution of intelligent tinkering.”
“The long fight to save wild beauty represents democracy at its best. It requires citizens to practice the hardest of virtues – self-restraint.”
Edwin Way Teale
“A thing is right when it tends to preserve the integrity, stability and beauty of the biotic community. It is wrong when it tends otherwise.”
“The earth does not belong to man; man belongs to the earth. This we know. All things are connected like the blood which unites one family.”
“I recognize the right and duty of this generation to develop and use our natural resources, but I do not recognize the right to waste them, or rob by wasteful use, the generations that come after us.”
“A true conservationist is a man who knows that the world is not given by his fathers but borrowed from his children.”
John James Audubon
“God bless America. Let’s save some of it.”
“The purpose of conservation: the greatest good to the greatest number of people for the longest time.”
“There is something infinitely healing in the repeated refrains of nature – the assurance that dawn comes after night, and spring after winter.”
“For those who have experienced the joy of being alone with nature, there is really little need for me to say much more; for those who have not, no words of mine can even describe the powerful, almost mystical knowledge of beauty and eternity that come, suddenly, and all unexpected.”
“We cannot solve the problems we have created with the same thinking that created them.”
“Live simply so that others may simply live.”
“In the end we will conserve only what we love; we will love only what we understand; and we will understand only what we are taught.”
“After you have exhausted what there is in business, politics, conviviality, and so on – and have found that none of these finally satisfies – what remains? Nature remains.”
Dr. Shalaway can be heard on Birds & Nature from 3 to 4 p.m. Sunday afternoons on 620 KHB Radio, Pittsburgh, live online at www.khbradio.com, or on the Tune-In radio app. Visit Scott’s website, www.drshalaway.com, or contact him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or 2222 Fish Ridge Road, Cameron, WV 26033.