Uncle TreeHugger Wants You

NOTICE: Those who choose to read further are hereby drafted for Earth Mission Possible.

Thank you. By accepting this assignment, TreeHuggers, you have commited to the following. First off, forget the old Earth Day tactics. No parading, no protesting, no whining about toxics in your vital bodily fluids; and, definitely, forget about press releases that threaten Climate Change "end times" unless a list of demands are met. You are going undercover.

Strategy is simple. We're going to re-gather the troops for the coming charge.There are two tactics. The first one is straightforward. You're not just "doing your part" any more, you are a Change Agent at large. Slow and steady as it goes. Remember, organic food took 35 years to hit the main stage.

Flashy eye-grabbing hyper-efficient products, and dream technologies are only a starting point. Make your health, happiness, creativity, and awareness an inspiration.

The challenging tactic involves getting into meat space. Blue Stater's visit Red Stater's. City cousin visits country cousin. City mouse visits suburban mouse. Mix it up. That's basically it.

Well,...almost. You know that loud relative with the gun collection, bass boat, and yard cars? You are actually going to call him to see if you can come out for a visit and have him teach you how to fish. Whatever you do, do not blow your cover. From the first phone call onward, he'll put you to the test with goading remarks. Don't fall for it. Keep your cover. When you get there, ask to put your own worms on the hook. Remember: them's who catches 'em cleans 'em. And no hostile remarks about guns or "values". If he offers target shooting, it's reasonable to ask for safety tips first. Operating Cover Protecton Tip: if it turns out you're a dead-eye, make sure to widen the pattern out enough for him to out-do you.

Soccer mom. Invite that vegan city cousin out to the suburbs. Ask her to teach you about vegetarian cooking and maybe help you get an organic kitchen garden going. And if there's any bad looks at the MegaTruck just get past it OK? Do I have to spell out more examples? Didn't think so.

I know there's some pretty hardened characters out there. Might have to buy that brother an NRA membership for his birthday to prove yourself. Do what you have to do. It's only about 40 bucks.

Look for common ground. Weather talk leads to climate change. Offer to help with the gas, and maybe bring up peak oil when you ride away from the pump. A ride in the SUV leads to how wonderful it is to see greenery and how important conservation is for hunters and non-hunters alike. Keep trying until you hit one.

The goal here is just to leave your undercover target feeling like the other side of the divide is filled with good, open minded people. When you hear "like you even if you are a TreeHugger", thats the gold.

Be patient. When the cavalry rides, and it will eventually, there's going to be thundering hooves, just like the first Earth Day.


by: John Laumer