Every Little Bit Helps

I recently ran across an excellent article (thanks, Byron) on the NY Times’ website (which you should read). It asks why we should bother trying to live greener, especially in the face of rampant, wasteful consumption at home and abroad, all the while drawing stares and snickers from Hummer-driving suburbanites. After all, there are plenty of times when it has felt like the changes I’ve made – using cloth diapers, biking instead of driving, starting a compost heap – make my life harder without making a bit of difference. Sure, I rode my bike two miles to work today, but then I spent eight hours making overpriced designer coffees for soccer moms and tie-clad desk jockeys in SUVs and sports cars, and rednecks in giant diesel pickups.

But I digress. The reason we do it is, basically, because we don’t have a choice, and because change so radical has to happen at the level of the individual. He quotes Wendell Berry: “Once our personal connection to what is wrong becomes clear, then we have to choose: we can go on as before, recognizing our dishonesty and living with it the best we can, or we can begin the effort to change the way we think and live.”

So. I’m going to keep riding my bicycle, I’m going to get rid of my trash cans, and I’m going to plant a damn garden.


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