My Thoughts and Dreams For This Earth Day

By Qin Sun Stubis

Modern science and technology have propelled us to probe farther and deeper into space, searching far and wide for new stars and planets. But for us Earthlings, the most important and brilliant of them all still remains right here at home – our Mother Earth. Without Her, there wouldn’t be people, civilizations, dreams, hopes, yesterdays, todays, and tomorrows.

Earth is our mother in the truest sense, for she has nurtured every life on her for nearly four billion years, from fungi to bacteria, lichens and plants, animals and humans. She has our undivided attention all the time, making dutiful revolutions around the sun as she ensures that our lives will carry on.

Currently, there are an estimated 1.5 million documented species on our planet – all embraced by our Mother Earth and nurtured by her ecosystem. However, not all of them coexist harmoniously as they compete for resources until only the “fittest” survive, which explains why so many have gone extinct throughout the ages.

Of all the lives Earth has nurtured in the last few thousand years, the human ones might be crowned as the strongest and fittest. With our brain power, we’ve prospered by domesticating animals and mastering farming. We’ve changed our landscapes by building dams and skyscrapers. We industrialize our societies and send rockets into the sky. And of course, we claim most of the natural resources for our own use.

Forests are cleared to plant crops to feed our ever-growing population, waste water is pumped into rivers for quick disposal, and underground resources are tapped for energy needed for industrialization. But as we conquer the world, our feathered, furred, and scaled friends are struggling. They cannot make sense of their rapidly changing environment, let alone cope with it. As a result, many may not survive.

Some studies show that the extinction rate is accelerating and is now one thousand times faster because of us humans. In other words, we’re growing stronger at the cost of other lives. While “survival of the fittest” explains who lives and who dies, it is not an excuse for our greed and irresponsible behaviors. After all, our Mother Earth has created this place not just for us humans, but all creatures, including every polar bear and Monarch butterfly, every honey bee and flowering tree. It’s time we again make our planet a wonderful place for them all.

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