Reduce, reuse, recycle. My grandmother had a drawer full of string and rubber bands and a spot in her pantry for paper bags. My grandfather kept spare bolts and screws and whatnots in old Sucrets cans. My mother, one summer, showed me how to determine which paper plates could be washed and how to wash them. I think my father had computer magazines from the late 70’s until my mother convinced him that they were all outdated. Grandpa, suprised the crap out of me when, before he passed on, bought a new Dodge Caravan with cash. When I asked him how he could afford to do that on only a Social Security income, he said that he does not waste anything.
My grandparents survived the depression of the 30’s by getting by with less, using things until they could no longer be used and not wasting anything. My In-Laws, while not nearly as old, still had the same philosophy on the farm. Reduce, Reuse, Recycle… a philosophy used quite successfully by those that were forced to survive the depression and still today by people living in ‘flyover’ country. (Flyover country are those people that live in the country that politicians and rich snobs flyover on their way to places like Los Angeles, New York or Chicago). So when did this become the battle cry and prayer for the tree huggers?
You know these people, the ones that eat tofurkey, wear pleather sandals and shirts made of hemp, drive eco friendly cars with bumper stickers like ‘tolerance’ that have no tolerance for anyone except those that think like them. The ones that refer to the planet as ‘mother earth’. Some of these people have resorted to eco-terrorism in an attempt to force you to think and act like them.
Now, before you get your panties in a knot, I am NOT saying that recycling is bad. Quite the contrary. As a conservative, I believe in ‘conserving’ what I have. As a Christian, I believe in being a good steward of what God has given me. I still write with a fountain pen and save spare nuts and bolts in containers that would normally get tossed in the trash. I shred paper, separate aluminum cans from kitchen garbage and reuse my coffee grounds in my garden. I have found new uses for my ‘Altoids’ tins and yes I believe in ‘GOOS’ paper. But what I do NOT do is force others to act as I do. I do not puncture the tires of huge, gas guzzling SUV’s nor do I spike trees so that a person cutting down that tree dies or gets wounded. I wear a leather belt, eat steak (when I can afford it) and sorry, come Thanksgiving and Christmas, I eat real turkey.
My parents and grandparents were forced, through common sense and necessity to reduce, reuse and recycle and that is not such a bad thing. There is nothing wrong with, instead of throwing something away, giving that old item a new life by donating it to the Salvation Army or Goodwill. When replacing the stove that still works with a new one, Habitat for Humanity can find a new home for the stove. And why buy these fancy organizing containers when you can simply breath new life in an Altoids tin, a curiously strong idea, isn’t it?
I do not worship ‘mother earth’. I will not ever wear hemp shirts or be forced to drive a car whos battery costs $20,000 dollars to replace but the concept that the tree huggers and earth worshippers are the only ones that believe in ‘conserving’ what we have is absurd. I bet that if the economy continues to tank like it has for the last 7 years, we all will learn to be more ‘conservative’ in more ways than one.
A funny and famous quote from someone I know;
“I am of Scotish and Jewish ancestry. I have learned to pinch the buffalo off the nickle, ride it until it drops, have a barbeque, and charge twenty five cents a plate.” R.R.