John Heaton (jheaton) wrote,
John Heaton
jheaton

Happy Earth Day!

Happy Earth Day! Earth Day was invented right here in Wisconsin, you know, by U.S. Senator Gaylord Nelson. Here's a picture from the very first Earth Day March at the Wisconsin State Capitol, back in 1970:

Earth Day March near Wisconsin State Capitol

What I find kind of amusing about this photo is that with the possible exception of the ecology flag, which you see very rarely these days, there's really nothing about this picture that would make anyone think it wasn't taken at an Earth Day march at the Capitol today. Madison lefties still look pretty much like this. Nor does this description from Sen. Nelson's May 1970 newsletter of how the first Earth Day was observed in Madison sound like something that couldn't have happened this morning: "Earth Day was observed at sunrise over Lake Mendota with a Sanskrit invocation and a reading from the last chapter of the Book of Genesis with an apology to God for man's assaults on the landscape." Part of me wonders if he meant to say the first chapter of Genesis; there's nothing in the the last chapter that is particularly apropos for Earth Day.

For my own part, I'll be celebrating Earth Day this coming Saturday. The City of Madison Parks Division is encouraging groups and neighborhood leaders to host an Earth Day Challenge Project in their local park, and my church is cosponsoring the event (and a picnic!) at the big park in our neighborhood. Should be fun, so feel free to join us!
 
Tags: current events, holidays, wisconsin: madison
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