Soost on Seuss
By ELAINE SOOST, Former Conservation Chair


"The earth does not belong to man, man belongs to the earth."
-- Chief Seattle

What do a cat, turtle, and elephant have in common? They each were a main character in a Dr. Seuss book. The lessons taught in those children's stories are profound and critical to the survival of civilized society and the environment. Cat in the Hat urged us to be responsible and clean up our messes. Yertle the Turtle showed us not to abuse power. Horton Hears a Who told us "a person is a person no matter how small", that your voice counts, use it! Due to our modern society, very few can be pure environmentalists (eg. no use of energy sources other than solar or wind). But small actions by many of us can add up to a positive impact on the environment. Choose a few actions that fit your lifestyle, then add more, or influence others to join you (and so on and so on ....) The point is to do something! Perhaps match your project to your personality type:

Andy Rooney - Write letters to your local newspaper and representatives to save our forests, fight for clean air and water, protect endangered species.

Ed Begley, Jr. - Recycle (now that many cities have mandated programs, it's really easy). Better yet, 'complete the circle' - buy products made from recycled materials (bet you already have some and don't know it).

Andy Lipkis - Join in community clean-ups and tree plantings.

Jacques Cousteau - Volunteer at museums or wildlife centers that educate about maintaining a viable environment for all species.

Ted Turner - Donate funds to environmental causes or Sierra Club legal challenges.

Most of all, just be informed on important issues. Not sure what you want to do or where to get the information? The Internet is an almost endless resource (for those who have access) - start at and follow the (green brick) links. Call the Sierra Club chapter office for a list of current issues and activities. Talk to other Sierra Club members about their favorite causes. If you are aware of an issue affecting your neighborhood, let me or another leader know about it (we count on everyone to be our eyes and ears). As the Onceler said in The Lorax, a hauntingly realistic tale of "unrestrained progress", "Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It's not."


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