I used to live in the foothills of Los Angeles, and from the playground of my elementary school, Thomas A. Edison, on a “clear” day we could see LA and the ocean beyond. On other days it was shrouded in a yellow-brown cloud of smog. I thought of those days when I read how clean and clear the air is in the USA today. I was amazed at how quickly the air cleaned itself up with a washcloth named pandemic.
The line “No purpose but what we make” hits home now because it is not the animals or the plants themselves that pollute, but humans. The cattle farts pollute, you say, yes true, but there would not be so many cattle if we didn’t need millions of them to feed our meat-hungry bellies. The rest is mostly us – cars, planes, factories, power plants, fires, and the list goes on. We know what we are doing. We have been told this for decades now. And our rivers, bays, and oceans are suffocating from our waste and dying.
So what can I, one person, do to take our fragile earth off its respiratory and thrive? I can recycle as much as possible and not buy items that are not in recycled packages. I can cut down on my driving by doing my shopping and errands on one day, not four or five small trips. I can plant trees and shrubs. I can stop eating beef but I doubt I will ever become a vegetarian. I can take those plastic bags back to the grocery store and put them in the bin provided. I can make my doctor’s appointments two a day, not on separate days. I can pray that if everyone did some of these things, and more I haven’t thought about, our earth might once again be clean, clear, crisp and celebrating that we humans are taking good care of her.