I love the earth.
I may have given the impression otherwise. I’ve confessed that I’m an agnostic when it comes to global warming. I’ll admit that I’m not a tree hugger. In fact, the thought of a rabid tree hugger often makes me want to kick a tree right in the crotch, just so those trees don’t start thinking too highly of themselves.
But I do think we ought to take care of the earth. And I hate to see people giving environmentalism a bad name by shamelessly advertising their “compassion” for the earth while really doing nothing. Environmentalism is like an accessory to most people, like a Livestrong bracelet.
Of course, there are a ton of cliché methods to commemorate Earth Day. However, instead of planting a tree, I’ve got three suggestions for how you can celebrate this Earth Day on Friday and “Green Week” until then!
Buy More Gasoline
A couple of weeks ago, I got an invitation on Facebook to not buy any gas on April 15. The idea was to “send a message” to evil oil corporations. That’s cute. I’m sure if the message got relayed to any oil executives, they’d be really moved by our feeble attempt to not buy their product.
If you like wasting your time on meaningless shows of “solidarity,” then go ahead and be a noob. If not, consider this:
Even if we all did it, not buying gas for one day does nothing to lower gas prices. Gas doesn’t follow the laws of supply and demand. It follows the law of speculation. Speculators know that even if you summon the mighty will power, fueled by righteous indignation, to not buy gas for one day, you’ll have to buy gas eventually. Thus, you did nothing to actually lower demand, and you proved nothing.
Besides that, gasoline is just a small part of oil demand. If your home ever catches fire, you will be dead. Know why? Because everything in your house is made of oil. Your carpet, your refrigerator, your TV, your home’s siding and windows, the fertilizer in your yard, your computer, your food containers, your pillows, your toothbrush. You are living in a barrel of oil. Gasoline is literally a drop in the bucket.
Every year, everyone gets mad as hell about gas prices, but we always act like a bunch of chumps and don’t do anything about it. Then prices go down, and we forget about it. I’m going to the gas pump this week. I’m going to get mad about it, and then I’m going to make the same meaningless gesture I make each month: write my Congressmen and tell them I’m going to campaign for their opponents.
Eat a Burger
People say that cow farts are killing the earth, and maybe that’s true. Methane is ten times worse than carbon dioxide. So we shouldn’t eat hamburgers, goes the logic. We should eat some less farty animal. Like peacocks.
How many cattle live in the U.S.? If you guessed about 98 million, you’d be right. That’s a lot of bovine backdraft polluting my air.
But no one ever asks how many cows live outside the evil gluttonous United States of McDonald’s. Would you guess that China has 130 million cattle, or that Africa has 230 million, or that India alone has 280 million cattle? None of those Indian cows are even being eaten! They just live their whole holy lives, eating and farting. Africans use cows as currency!
If you want to eat veggie burgers for your health, go ahead. I love veggie burgers. But if you’re doing it it to “save the planet,” you’re just making another meaningless gesture. You can say that every little bit makes a difference. I say it makes no difference, except to your ego.
Keep Your Thermostat Right Where It’s At
We’re told that to save the planet, we have to turn our thermostats up or down to cut energy use. Now I will grant you this: most public places are blasting the AC. 68 degrees is not a normal summer temperature. I think they’re trying to keep the unwashed masses from fermenting or something. A little deodorant in August would go a long way to solve that, people.
But last year, the United Nations shut down their AC over a weekend. How sweet. I think a few of the international delegates also opened a lemonade stand out front to “raise money to save Earth.”
Except the UN building is a giant glass greenhouse with no opening windows. Do you know how much energy they wasted with the AC working overtime getting the building back to a comfortable temperature? You’d think a chimp had thought of this idea. So turn your thermostat up a few degrees at night this summer and keep the windows shut. But think twice before switching it off altogether.
Before you think that I don’t do anything to help the planet, I want you to know that I am turning my TV off this week…during NBC’s “green” themed comedy lineup. How’s that for a meaningless gesture? Oh, I’m also going to start recycling rocks. Nobody’s talking about de-rockification of our natural rock resources.
I’m all for being environmentally friendly, as long as it’s not just a sanctimonious show of self-congratulating, which is what the environmental Pharisees are so good at. What do you think? Do we have an added duty as Christians to be environmentalists? What do you do that actually makes a difference?