Grist has never been crazy about Earth Day, but this year decided to milk it with a Screw Earth Day campaign. Two years ago David Roberts was complaining about it, noting that it wasn't enough, saying "Yup. The time for "small steps" is long past. It's time for people to wake the hell up." This year they turned it into a contest.
Now they finally get around to explaining their position:
Screw Earth Day was born from mixed emotions about a day that we purists think doesn't do enough to get the message across about what individuals can and should be doing to protect the environment. While even the most jaded Grist staffer gets a little excited on Earth Day, as lots and lots of people gather together in communities around the world to do something good for our dearly loved Mother Nature, in the back of our heads we're thinking, "It's not about a single day, dude, it's about living green every day."
Green is all the hype everywhere. So you might think that the public would be engaged in this push.
But polls find public interest as low as ever, and opinion about climate and energy policy is as inchoate and incoherent as ever. There are no rallies. There are no emails and letters and phone calls streaming into Congressional offices. There is no real social movement behind energy/climate action. There's nothing to push a recalcitrant member of Congress in the right direction.
And you don't engage the public or influence politicians by crapping all over Earth Day, , and not using the opportunity to deliver the message yet again, and try to pick up a few more converts to help start a real social movement behind energy/climate action.
Right now we have to send a loud message to those recalcitrant members of congress, as Margaret Thatcher said: This is no time to get wobbly. It is also no time to be telling people to Screw Earth Day. It IS time to push this button, and every other one we can get to, as hard as we can.
TreeHugger on Earth Day:
Earth Day: Oh, What is the Point of it all?
Back to the Earth on Earth Day! Urban Homesteading on the Upswing
History of Earth Day in a Nutshell
Green Apple Festival Concerts Coming to a City Near You
How to Go Green: Earth Day
And on Planet Green, we are promoting the Green Apple Festival, with one in Seattle, near Grist headquarters. Come on out and have a good time.