You Give a Damn, and That’s a Problem


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Chances are that if you are reading this website, you either A. care about the environment in one way or another or B. you know me personally. Most likely you are not someone who owns an oil rig, drives a Hummer, or eats fast food for every meal. Either you read the site every day or you are a visitor looking for information on natural cleaning, the dangers of parabens, or organic foods. In other words, you probably give a damn about what happens here on our home planet and what you put in your body. And therein lies the problem.

Most of the world is not like you and I; they don’t really worry about being “green” or protecting the planet. They either have much bigger concerns (like finding water each day) which no one can blame them for or they haven’t gotten the memo yet that our planet is in peril and we all need to change our behavior ASAP. Sure, there are those who truly don’t care about anyone or anything and are too self-involved to be concerned, but most people on the planet fall into two categories:

1. They have bigger issues to contend with than planetary stewardship.


2. They haven’t gotten the memo yet on just how up sh*t’s creek we are without a paddle.

We, the readers of The Good Human and other green websites, truly do believe that everyone else knows about how to recycle, how GMO foods are bad for us, how climate change is destroying nature, and how we all need to clean up our act before it’s too late. I know I believe it sometimes, especially when I get caught up in my green bubble consisting of fellow environmentalists, Twitter followers, and other green bloggers. When you are in that bubble, it’s hard to see outside the walls you have created for yourself. “Everyone cares about the environment!” Not exactly.


I was thinking about this the other day when writing about the 2012 GOP candidates and the crazy things they say. Santorum supporters, for example, really think their candidate can win the presidency. Why? Because they are stuck in their own little Santorum-World where everyone loves him. It’s a tiny world, trust me – the rest of the world doesn’t want to be in that world. The rest of us don’t think that wanting to go to college makes one a snob or that women aren’t intelligent to decide for themselves about birth control options. It’s crazyland in there; the majority of us don’t want to even go near the door. But the believers in that world really think their guy has a shot when he doesn’t. Should he get past Romney, he will quickly discover that the rest of us aren’t interested in crazyland.

Same goes for us though, as we think the majority of people know all about current environmental issues and are just choosing to ignore them and the dangers that they bring. But really, they don’t know – and I think they wouldn’t ignore the issues if they knew about them. So how can we reach them?

I’m not sure.

I have been writing this website for the past 6 years in hopes of reaching as many people as possible on eco-issues. And I am thankful for how many I do get to reach in my limited capacity. But there has to be more we can do, either on our own or as a collective.

We need to branch out.

We need to talk to someone openly about the issues we are facing.

We need to stop judging and start teaching.

We need to be honest.

We need to speak up.

You and I give a damn, and that’s a problem because we often think everyone else does too.

So start doing a little more to open up that little green bubble to more of your friends, family members, co-workers, and neighbors. Pass along a link to this or another green website. Bring up environmental issues that concern you while at town meetings, PTO meetings, or neighborhood picnics. Don’t be shy, don’t be self-conscious, don’t be afraid. These are important topics and the more who hear about them the more there will be to help to clean up our collective act before it’s too late. Sometimes all anyone needs to hear is a little factual information and they will be on board too.

We’re We’re all in this together, so let’s start acting like it. You in?

Multicolored bubble image from BigStock

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  1. I think the “environmentalists” sometimes come on too strong. It’s not easy for everyone to suddenly go from zero interest to a full out stop global warming mindset. When someone accuses them of not giving a damn, then they’ll just get defensive.

    I don’t get up on my green pedestal very often, but I do proudly carry around my Pyrex for lunches, coffee thermos, reuseable water cup, and bike to work when the weather is nice.

    Over the past year, my mother has started to use pyrex and kick the plastic habit. My corporate employer distributed reusable water cups, and a suburban dwelling coworker is analyzing the cost/benefit of taking the bus to work.

    It’s the little things. This is how you help people give a damn. One step at a time.

    1. Very true, no one responds to demands. At the same time, it is up to those of us already “in the know” to inch people forward without alienating them.

  2. I have given your website to others because it has good information and I have also noted it in my comments on the Care2 website. I hope my puny efforts help out. I’m too old to be an activist right now, but I am spreading the word. Thanks for your efforts to heal our planet.

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