I have had a break through. After everything that has happened this week, after our enlightening talk with Maria Thiry, after everything we have learned throughout this entire semester. I have finally had the opportunity to put my money where my mouth is, and actually apply it.
I went home this weekend, because I had a final post op appointment with my orthopedic surgeon. While I was home I was able to attend my home church service. During our Sunday School class, which I go to with my parents, we were discussing environmental issues and spirituality. Long story short, we concluded that as Christians we should be the one’s that care the most about the environment because we believe it is a gift from God. This does come with a lot of backlash amongst the church community, because many Christians tend to be politically left winged, and often call global warming and climate changes a hoax. I say this as a generalization, but there is some truth in every stereotype.
I was very surprised by the content of our lesson, and I felt a little sense of pride as everyone seemingly agreed with the idea. That was until an older gentleman spoke out. His tone showed that he felt attacked by the idea of becoming more sustainable, and his defenses had come up. He kept saying that when he was a kid everyone talked about global warming, but nothing’s changed so why should it now? He was just stuck in his ways.
It was at this time, that I realized what I needed to do. I needed to apply everything that I have learned from this class, and do my best to present it to this man in a way that he might understand and not feel threatened by. I calmly explained that there are small changes that we can make on a personal level (no one is trying to take away his car and make him walk every where) and that it is about moderation. I also told him that there are big changes that need to be made at a corporate/government level that requires regulation. I brought up several of the point that Ms. Thiry talked about like the Dirty Laundry and Green Peace. But even after that, I could tell that what I was saying was only falling on deaf ears, and so we moved on.
It wasn’t until after church, when he came up to me afterwards that I fully realized what my actions had done. He thanked me for allowing him to see the world through a young person’s eyes, and he said that I gave him hope for the furture. To me, this was the best thing that could have happened. My education and boldness showed this man who is stuck in his ways, that there is hope for the future because of people like me. We want the best for our planet and we are going to fight for it. But not just through actions, but through education; which is what this class is all about.