Our home is a planet described by Carl Sagan as a pale blue dot in a universe that is incomprehensibly enormous. When described in this manner, it seems impossibly small. How many billions have fallen in love in the short history of the planet? How many have grown to maturity, how many have worked to make our home a horrible place, and more importantly, how many have worked to make our home a better place for them having been here?
I have had some unique experiences throughout my life, and one of those experiences took me to a place in which words fail to do its description justice. When I stood on the precipice of Dante’s View Death Valley, I was looking close to a mile straight down to the lowest point in the contiguous United States, and as I turned my gaze to the north, I saw Mt Whitney (highest point in the contiguous United States). It was 135 miles away from where I stood, but I could see it clearly on that day in February. We have so many gifts that can be found all over the world we call home!
We can discuss pollution created by human activity, and if we do, we are all guilty to one degree or other. Even the most conscientious of us leaves behind something, however small; it is part of being human, we make trash. We can discuss climate change, which is a non-starter, because there are so many opposing views that even if it were something that humans could change, it would not happen, because too many would not be able to agree upon anything let alone the proper course forward. We can discuss government entities tasked with protecting the environment, and really categorize their shortcomings, but other than embarrassing the governmental agencies involved, what does that actually do to help with problems? Seriously? Not much.
Our planet has seen some amazing times, from volcanic eruptions that literally changed the global climate! Can we solve those problems? Not a chance, but that is not what I am suggesting with this piece. Global Climate change is a fact. Whether or not it is manmade is subject to debate, but I am not suggesting we go down that road. I would suggest that we leave that as the waste of time it is, and focus on something that can be done. There is something we can do that is meaningful, and it is something that will improve our home.
I do have a rather simple idea. Let’s pick up our garbage. I don’t mean the trash bags that have been dropped here and there; though that would be very helpful… However, even if we were more mindful over how we deal with it on a day to day basis. None of this needs to be difficult, but people need to get away from a very specific mindset in order to make any of this a reality. I will touch on this here, though it encompasses everything. In general the attitude of most citizens of the United States goes something like: “It is not my problem / garbage, I don’t need to be the one to fix / clean it.”
We are of course free to have that attitude, but it is that attitude that brought us an Island made of plastic garbage floating in the center of the Indian Ocean. It does not matter how it came into being, all that matters is that it is there, and it is growing. If we maintain our attitude that it is not our garbage and someone else should be the person responsible for its removal, then it will continue to grow. The same can be said about the corruption within our government, within our injustice system, even with the agencies who carry out the wishes of the politicians within government. We can continue to have the attitude that it is not our garbage, that someone else should clean it up, OR we can acknowledge that pile of garbage on our lawn, roll up our sleeves, and go to work. Ladies and Gentlemen, there is a great deal of garbage on our lawn, and it requires a great deal of work to clean it up… Come out and work with me! I am not difficult to find, so feel welcome in messaging me, joining me, and working with me to clean up the garbage on our lawn and making our world a better place from us having been here!
All rights reserved.