I don’t know what the founders of Earth Day would have thought about what happened to their idea fifty years later. Perhaps horrified by how commercialized it’s become and the greenwashing that pops up every year. Maybe glad that at least some people remember what it was supposed to be. I doubt any of them would have expected what’s happening now, with a pandemic forcing so many people to stay inside, giving the rest of nature more room to breathe. The optimist in me hopes that some good will come of this whole situation, that we’ll see that we don’t have to be constantly using more resources than is necessary. I know of several people personally, for example, who would be perfectly happy if they could telecommute permanently; and wouldn’t it be nice if we decided we wanted to keep the air and water clearer, and so work toward removing our reliance on fossil fuels?

I know it’s a bit of a pipe dream, but it’s a good goal to work toward, even if our results aren’t as complete as we’d like. The perfect is the enemy of the good, after all, and this is no reason to not at least try our best.

Species portrayed: Coyote (Canis latrans), tulip (Tulipa sp.)