By: Martin Bartloff
A great weight lifted off my shoulders when I listened to the announcement that the United States has finally agreed to a change in direction on global climate agreements.
Born and raised in Germany comes with a completely different outlook on our environment. Growing up, I was taught in school not to litter. We actually had classes on the subject.
I immigrated from Germany to the United States back in 1991, and remember driving down an Interstate when suddenly, a trash-filled bag from a well known fast food chain, came flying out from the car in front of me. I grabbed pencil and paper and wrote down the license plate number. When I later proudly presented the evidence to a policeman I was laughed at. When you toss as much as a cigarette butt in the country I was raised in, you end up with a hefty fine.
Throughout the years I've made extra efforts to stop some abuse against Mother Earth. I remember a friend asking me to assist him changing the oil and filter on his automobile. When all was finished, my friend carried a plastic bowl with five quarts of used motor oil to his bathroom.
No way! I thought, as he was about to unload the substance into his toilet. I explained to him that one drop of oil renders a bathtub full of drinking water useless, and I volunteered to take the used oil to the local parts store for recycling. Do the math; if my education changed how this person recycled his used motor oil, I saved many bathtubs worth of drinking water.
I'm grateful for the new policy concerning our environment and for a new, more global geared administration. I must say however, an educational process must be in place along with the changes. I'm not sure how it's asked that we protect the earth, when it seems some people can't take care of their problems at home. Animals build soft nests, why can’t we!
Earth Day, 2009
Look for Martin's book, Torn from Normal aka Like A Snowflake In Summer
June, 2009 - Echelon Press
Martin on Teen-Seen