Resurrecting an Old ‘Earth Day’
April 22nd is Earth Day. And it drives conservatives batty.
Even though its origin in 1970 was bipartisan, it has always been associated with liberalism, progressivism and wacko environmentalism.
It has been used as a bludgeon against conservatives for many years. If conservatives don’t take Earth Day seriously, then they don’t take the earth seriously, so the non-conservatives claim.
But conservatives ought to be concerned about environmental toxic waste and pollution and wasting energy. These issues are real. And, I believe, many conservatives are serious about these concerns.
I recall as a child throwing garbage out of a moving car. My mom stopped the car and made me pick it up. How many remember recycling cans in the 80s? And we always turned off the lights when not in use.
So why let the liberals take the credit for environmental concerns?
But it is not our own practices and convictions on the matter that should compel us, look at the social situation.
Many moderates and non-liberals already take environmental concerns seriously. Car manufacturers push hybrid and electric cars. It is a bragging point for new homes to contain better light bulbs and more energy efficiency. And it is taught in the schools.
We believe it. Society believes it. This issue is here to stay. Why fight it?
In fact, why not co-opt this hot-button issue?
We can draw attention to everyday concerns. Excessive waste. Needless use of electricity and gas. These are things we can readily deal with, something easier to grasp than the end of the world.
And the solution is easier to accomplish as well. Use better light bulbs. Turn off the lights early. Turn off the TV. Turn off the computer.
Going out to eat means using more resources, especially fast food restaurants with disposable products. Entertainment means more driving and more gas usage.
In fact, working around the house every day—yard work, car work, basement repair—all use energy.
What if we, as a nation, decided to take a day off from all this energy consumption and disposable waste. An entire day could be “green” and make everybody feel better (both from the liberal guilt and from work in general).
In fact, the whole conservatives-are-greedy-consumerists could be short-circuited with this approach.
Think about it: having an entire day off without work and without making others work. Holidays do that already. Why not have another one?
If it got popular enough, it could be a weekly green day.
One day in seven.
How about the Christian Sabbath—Sunday?
Although the earth is not the central point of the day, it turns out those ornery Puritans had something right after all. When we honor God, He usually blesses us and everything else.
“There remaineth therefore a sabbath rest for the people of God” (Hebrews 4:9, ASV).
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