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Earth Day: celebrated for all the wrong reasons

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Today is Earth Day. Today is when we are expected to celebrate the Earth and to remind ourselves of our obligations towards her. That's okay, too, so far as it goes. Any decent conservative knows that we are called to be good stewards of what is put under our control. We are obliged to treat our planet, and all which is within it, well.

And there's the rub. We're not all that sure that such is the real intent of Earth Day. We harbor this fear that the original purveyors of the idea did not have true stewardship in mind. This fear is not allayed when we read such statements from peace activist John McConnell who proposed 'a day to honor the Earth and the concept of peace'. Does he mean that the Earth as the Earth merits honor, a specious idea on its face? And to honor the 'concept' of peace, indeed. Peace is hardly honorable when war is required, as, sadly, it sometimes is.

Then's there's this gem, from Earth Day 1970 organizer Denis Hayes: "(Earth Day is now) the largest secular holiday in the world, celebrated by more than a billion people every year.' This is dangerously close to seeming religious, and there are no more wrongheaded types of religious beliefs than those based on popular will. All this comes before calls for recycling and climate change/global warming/nuclear winter fears being raised, or the hypocrisy of Al Gore buying his way towards environmental responsibility. Further, we can almost hear the specter of Malthus in the crowd, given that awful Earth Day Anthem someone named Abhay K has penned rather insultingly to the tune of Ode to Joy. It appears that Earth Day supporters are, knowingly or not, proposing a modern, godless religion based solely on an inanimate object.

It's as those we're here for the Earth, and not the other way around. And that's the problem with the whole idea. We need to be good stewards of the Earth because it's here for us, for our benefit, and not as an entity of its own which commands our praise. To the degree our world has merit is as a creation of God given us for the purpose of our (we will say it) exploiting it reverently for our own good.

The Earth is ours; we are not the world. And that is why we have little regard for the day.

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