Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Environmental Stewardship as the Great Unifier

By Josh Gross

It is no secret that humans are a divided people. We separate ourselves based on religion, geographic location, skin color, gender, and many other factors. This is not healthy. These separations lead to inequality, conflicts of all shapes and sizes (including genocide), and misunderstanding. However, environmental stewardship is one of the few topics that transcends all of our artificial divisions. As such, it can be referred to as the Great Unifier.

The reason concern for the environment has the potential to unify humanity is that we all live on Earth. It doesn't matter what cultural practices we follow, what our skin color is, or whether we're male or female: we all live on the same planet. That means when our greed or ignorance causes us to harm God's creation, it impacts everyone. No one is immune to the effects of environmental degradation. It doesn't matter if you speak English or Spanish, Chinese or Japanese, God gave this planet to all of us. That means we all depend on the Earth for our survival. However, our dependence on the Earth isn't a bad thing. On the contrary, it is a blessing.

Just like the damage we cause to the environment hurts everyone on the planet, our efforts to be good stewards of God's Earth benefit all of humanity. You may not think you're doing much by switching to fluorescent light bulbs or composting as much waste as possible, but by caring for the Earth you're making life a little bit easier for people around the globe. This makes environmental stewardship a cause we can all get behind.

It is in every single human being's best interest to protect the home God gave us. If enough of us come to realize this then environmental concerns will be able to unite people from all walks of life. Republican and Democrat, Christian and Muslim, people from all backgrounds will have reason to work for a common purpose. Therefore, the next time someone asks you, "Why do you care about the environment," consider responding, "Because by doing so I am benefiting all of humanity and helping to create a more unified future." Because that's exactly what you're doing.

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