Odyssey: Earth Day
Amongst the polyester, bright colors, tight fitting pants, and platform shoes, a birth was about to take place. With Apollo 12 having problems and the Beatles’ “Let It Be” at number one, a man named Gaylord Nelson helped give birth to a new day. He called this new day Earth Day. Earth Day is held internationally to help bring awareness, education, and conservation of Earth’s natural resources and life overall. Earth Day will be 47 years old on April 22nd, 2017. The United Nations changed the name of Earth Day to International Mother Earth Day in 2009.
Gaylord Nelson was a U.S. Senator from Wisconsin. He was inspired by the anti-war movements being held by college students. He used this inspiration to help bring public awareness about air and water pollution. Due to his efforts, about 20 million Americans of all ages got together on April 22, 1970, to demand action from their elected officials and each other.
I am as much to blame as the rest of the humans that live on this planet. I take long showers, don’t keep up on recycling, and not everything I eat is good for me, or the products I use to clean are environmentally friendly. All of us, every single human has and is playing a part in the destruction of Earth, that is common sense. We know what we are doing; we make slight changes in our lives to make us feel like what we are doing is helpful to the environment. But, is it? I do not have a car, so we walk everywhere or take public transportation, in which we must schedule our rides in advance. Yes, walking and taking public transportation is helpful, but is it enough?
I can’t help to think back to the days of our ancestors and how they survived. They did not have all this ready-made food that comes in cans or prepackaged. They did not have cars to get them from point A to point B. They did not have electricity in their homes or out in the streets. There were no computers, no phones, no internet and no machines doing the work for them. In the beginning, humans lived with the planet not against as we do today. Looking at tribes that have little contact with the modern world, they are much happier than we are.
This is just me talking and thinking out loud, but can changing our lives back to living with the planet help us just as much as it will help Earth? Per Time, there is an increase of depression among our teenagers. Per Pediatrics, in a 12-month study showed an increase from 8.7 percent in 2005 to 11.3 percent in 2014 for adolescents and 8.8 percent to 9.6 percent in young adults. Per CBS News, 6.9 million people in the United States have symptoms of depression that affects their bodies and everyday life. I suffer from Chronic Depression, Social Anxiety, PTSD and Maladaptive Daydreaming. I am noticing that it is getting worse as the years go on. I have taken all those pills, but they caused more damage than good. Due to them I now I suffer a form of excoriation. Right now, I do not take any of those pills for my mental problems. The one thing I did notice during my life, especially before the depression and the rest of my medical conditions, I felt alive and happier after I was out in the garden. I felt peaceful. Which leads me to think, once again out loud, that if people get back to nature most of our problems such has depression will start to lessen? With that in mind, humans getting back to nature can help Earth blossom instead of dying off.
Helping Earth can also help us, humans. But, are we ready to do so? Why I ask that question is that we have pipelines to transport crude and refined oil and gas. The pipelines are money makers for those who are invested in them. We know these pipelines are important to us because it creates jobs, and it affects prices at the pumps and in our homes. You can search the news about pipelines and the danger they have on our planet. It is common sense that the pipelines do break and they do poison our waters, our soil, our vegetation and the wildlife, among our domesticated animals. Which means we, the humans who created the pipelines are in danger from these poisons.
What can we, the humans do? We can start by unplugging things at home. If something is not in use unplug it. This will cut your electricity bill down and help conserve energy.
You and your significant other can shower together. You get to spend some quality time together while making sure each other are squeaky clean. When done right, with no distractions, you can reduce your water bill and save on water.
Do you need to charge up your cellphone, laptop, and tablet? You should take a look at a solar charger. Instead of using a wall outlet you use the power of the sun to charge your items. Which means, you can take the charger with you, even when you are camping. You will be conserving energy, which will help the planet.
Take note of what you are eating. Per Earth Day, the meat industry is the cause of one-fifth of the human-made greenhouse gasses. Reducing your meat intake via the meat industry can help your body and the planet. Life Your Way says that the GOD-made foods are what we should be eating. That God created those foods for our bodies. The Man-made foods should occasionally be consumed. In a nutshell, food that Mother Earth has created should be eaten. We need to start getting away from human-made foods and start eating organic foods and what we hunt (To eat not for sport.) when it comes to meat. Just remember to take what you need to survive, and what you do not use, give to those in need. If none is in need place it back in the wild so other life forms, animals and plants can use it because it is food for them. Buy from the farmers’ market before you buy from a retail chain. Start a community garden to grow flowers, herbs, and vegetables to be shared throughout the community. Doing so will get you outside in the sun, in nature and help the planet and yourself.
Depending on the weather and where you live, walk or ride a bicycle to work. Walking is good, so is riding a bicycle and both provide much-needed exercise. Earth and your body will thank you. You will be working your body out, building stamina, burning calories, you will be out in nature which all does the body and mind good, plus you will be reducing the need for gas and oil for your car. Fewer emissions will be released into the air, which can cause people to get sick. Taking the stairs instead of the elevator can help your body and reduce the electricity needed to run the elevators. Use the elevator only if you need to, such as carrying groceries.
Another thing you can do is to buy green friendly products for your cleaning or make your own with green friendly products. Do not use plastic bags, but buy tote bags for your groceries. Try to recycle everything that can be recycled. You can make a compost bin at home for your garden or for your community to use in the community garden.
These are just a few ideas that can help with Earth and yourself. What other ideas can you come up with that can help our Mother Earth, our bodies, and our minds?
This is what my town is doing for Earth Day. What is your town doing?
As seen on Odyssey