What am I supposed to do?

Published 11:13 am Friday, September 30, 2022

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In my last Conservation Corner, I told you that this month I’d come up with some positive actions that we can all take in order to help our local and state conservation efforts. Since then I’ve been thinking, and it’s really hard for me to make a list for us all to use. We’re all so different, with different loves and different areas of expertise. I’ve noticed that when I try to explain to people about our current property tax laws, and state laws, and state and local tax issues, the folks that are supposed to be listening are looking off in space somewhere, wondering what in the ‘world I’m talking about. 


What is so easy to understand and obvious to me is Greek to my listeners. Maybe that’s the result of my being obsessed with land preservation and real-estate laws for 40+ years.  If you want to see my eyes glaze over, just start explaining some of the inner workings of the internet to me and you’ll see me looking towards the heavens for help.

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We are all different. We have different interests, different skills, and different loves. It is up to each of us to know what we love the most, and that will tell us how we can best serve the earth and the greater good.

I recently read an interview in  SUN magazine that is quite disturbing;  another ‘study’ that exemplifies the fact that human beings are destroying our earth, the very foundation of our existence. Endocrine disruptors, plastics being the primary source, are lowering sperm count. It’s just another example of how “living better through chemistry” was a scam that we all believed at the time, because we wanted to believe it. Here is a quote from that Sun magazine:

We have probed the earth, excavated it, burned it, ripped things from it, buried things in it, chopped down its forests, leveled its hills, muddied its waters, and dirtied its air. That does not fit my definition of a good tenant. If we were here on a month-to-month basis, we would have been evicted long ago.” – Rose Bird


The reality is that we are only tenants on this earth, and the landlord is reacting. Maybe we are being evicted because of our bad behavior. Although this is depressing, it brings to my mind (or heart) that maybe humans are not the ones who are really in charge of what’s going on – in the long run, the long run being thousands of years.

Years ago I worked at a small summer camp with a manager who was a firm believer in God’s absolute authority over everything on earth. Every word in the Bible is absolute truth, to be obeyed regardless of the situation. We argued pretty much every day. One day I came home from work and told our son John, 14 years old at the time, that there might be one absolute truth, that homosexuality might not be in the “divine plan’ because if we were all homosexuals then it would mean the eventual extinction of the human race. John looked at me as if I was nuts and said “Mom, don’t you think that it IS the divine plan – we have too many people here already!”

John was right. Maybe there is a divine plan, and a lower sperm count for humans is part of that plan to help human beings survive a bit longer than if we were the only ones making decisions. Maybe humanity will be extinct someday. We simply do not know, which is very difficult for us humans who want to know everything. 

But, some life will survive. Our purpose on this earth is to take care of each other and take care of our earth as best we can. When you see an open field, remember that the field will be able to feed us and animals if we simply preserve it as a field even if it is now covered with unsightly weeds. Keep thinking of the next generations. Be a good tenant. Help your neighbor be a good tenant too. Land is life; without it, there will be no life.

I’ll close with a quote from Rachel Carson: “We now stand where two roads diverge. But unlike the roads in Robert Frost’s familiar poem, they are not equally fair. The road we have long been traveling is deceptively easy, a smooth superhighway on which we progress with great speed, but at its end lies disaster. The other fork of the road – the one ‘less traveled‘ – offers our last, our only chance to reach a destination that assures the preservation of our earth.”