This year the annual birthday celebration for our country on the Fourth of July has been muted by the corona virus. Yet though it is important to be patriotic and to celebrate, it may be that one day is not enough to show our patriotism. Parades are wonderful, fireworks are lots of fun to watch, and of course backyard barbecues are almost mandatory, however what is most meaningful is to celebrate our patriotism all the year round.
To be patriotic is to demonstrate our love for our country. To my way of thinking one of the best ways we can do that is by showing respect for as well as taking care of the environment. Some can do more than others yet everyone can do a little. Recycling is important, as is reducing waste. Bringing our own bags into stores once we are allowed to do so again is another. Conservation of resources is vital to the health of the planet, as is avoiding leaving our waste around.
Most people pick up after their dogs when they are out walking. This is very important. Once no one even thought about this. Earlier yet, people threw the contents of their chamber pots into the streets. Many died from illnesses that were pollution born. Today there are people who throw their plastic bags and other plastic and unrecyclable products down when and wherever they use them. This often results in harm to wildlife, as well as to the woods or beaches where it accumulates.
Some ways to care for the environment come naturally to me. Because I was brought up to be tidy, it’s easy for me not to litter. I’d no more throw trash away on the sidewalk or worse, in the woods, than I would throw it on my living room floor. Like me, those who see the earth as their home tend to treat her differently than those who do not. They treat her and her resources with respect and gratitude. They treat her like the home she is.
Those people are setting an example for others. I believe that is one of the best things we can do to be of help in the world. Teaching by example is an extremely important way to prompt others to improve their behavior. Often what people are told goes in one ear and out the other; what they have observed and experienced is more powerfully remembered. It is important to show our patriotism on an everyday basis. One simple way is to turn off the water faucet when it is running unnecessarily.
I thought about this one day recently while I was brushing my teeth. I try to remember to shut off the water after I have wet my toothbrush and filled the little cup I use for rinsing. I also try to shut off the kitchen faucet at intervals as I wash dishes: between pots, for instance, or when I am drying anything. There is a true story called the Hundredth Monkey of how monkeys on an island washed their food. Somehow the habit spread between islands that had no contact. This occurred when the critical number of food washing monkeys had been reached. Perhaps if we all contribute to the consciousness of conservation, one day everyone will take care with our precious environment, and the earth will truly thrive.