Do you remember what you were doing on Earth Day 1970? That was the first national gathering of the environmentally concerned. Some of you might have still been in diapers, or not yet born, so here's the official history.
I was at the University of Michigan in 1970, and that campus was/is renown for activism and protests. I don't recall the exact details, but I'm sure I was into doing something. Our American Indian group, American Indians Unlimited, took Earth Day quite seriously; I remember a bumper-sticker we all had on our cars: "America: Love It or Give it Back". I also worked at the School of Natural Resources for Dr. Richard Duke who was involved in building one of the first social and environmental computer simulations for city planners. (Think prototype for Sim City)
Earth Day was originally a U.S. phenomenon, but has spread to global recognition. Yet in the ensuing forty years it doesn't seem that much has happened on the "Love Earth" campaign. Along with the natural calamities striking areas around the world, the national economics of many countries have restricted Earth's management to isolated areas, and education--what the original Earth Day was all about--has more of a "preaching to the choir" aspect rather than effectively reaching the masses.
With Earth Day, are we merely keeping up appearances by adding yet another "special" day to the calendar? I will contemplate this as I make my once-a-week trip to town; I'll recycle my paper, tin, cardboard and glass while I'm there--something I do every month, not just once a year (Getting rid of plastic is a bimonthly event; our area population isn't large enough to have a full-time plastics recycle center). As usual, I'll have groceries packed in my reusable bags and check the air in my tires to get the maximum gas mileage from my efficient four-cylinder car.
Just another day.