The Case for the American Grey Wolves

The Case for the American Grey Wolves

As a young man, my father would regale me with stories of his hunting prowess. He was quite honest about it he preferred to small game. However, he also helped me develop respect for the ecosystem of our country. In mid-teens I was taken into the Boundary Waters of Minnesota where I had a brief encounter with a wolf.

At the time, I was enthralled by the scenery I was studying when I had a feeling I was not alone. It is an attitude I have developed throughout my years of camping and hiking. When I looked around, I saw the wolf trotting deeper into the woods. Since then I have made contributions to saving the wolf.

So I became alarmed when I learned that Congress had declared war on the American Wolves. The Senate introduced a bill that would release hunting restrictions on the wolves in four states Minnesota, Michigan, Wyoming, and Wisconsin. A week a similar bill was introduced in the House of Representatives. So to better understand I did some research.

From a person that has a background as a scientist and conservationist, I learned about three possible explanations. According to the author Leda Huta, the first reason is money. State revenues are increased by state fish and wildlife agencies, by the sale of fishing and hunting licenses, and the sale of ammunition. Because these organizations depend on revenue from hunters. It is likely that they are going to cater to hunters who want only humans killing deer and elk. The trophy hunters want to kill wolves.

Secondly, ever since the wolves were reintroduced to the wolves by the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Services, the wolf is not considered an essential cog in the ecosystem, but a representative of everything federal.

Lastly, is the mythology, that we have created about wolves. That they are supernatural beasts that threaten our existence, as in Red Riding Hood or stories about Werewolves.

In 2011, Bob Robb wrote in “Six Reasons to Kill Wolves,” is first there are too many wolves. Especially in areas where there is a lot of food, such as Yellowstone National Park. So much so that the wolf was removed from the Endangered Species Act in 2009. He states that in the sports hunting season of 2009 that 72 of 75 targeted wolves were killed in Montana, and 188 of 220 in Idaho.

Secondly, Robb states that wolves decimated the ungulate population. From the hunters, point of view the elk, deer, and moose populations have plummeted. Lower ungulate numbers mean state game managers are forced to offer fewer hunting licenses.  This means less revenue for that prospective state.

Then there is the third reason which is the elk and deer are not stupid. They are heading to higher ground to avoid being dinner for wolves. This put a hardship on the hunter because they have to engage the rougher terrain which has caused some hunters to quit hunting.

The fourth reason involves the belief that wolves don’t care what is on the menu. When wolves have less game to hunt, they have wandered into human habitation. When that happens pets and cattle become lunch. However, when ranchers complain about lost livestock and animal rights groups offer to mitigate the cost.

The fifth reason is wolves are the poster boy animals. Wolves are beautiful animals thus making them poster child from animal rights groups. “I’ve actually had officers from some prominent animal rights’ groups tell me that when they need to raise some quick cash, all they have to do is send out a mailer with the picture of a wolf on it that begs their donors for a few bucks to keep the evil hunters from killing these poor, innocent creatures.”1

In the sixth reason, Robb argues that endless litigation holds the wolves protected. Animal run wild are his primary targets.  Robb states that these groups advocate letting animals run wild and to stop hunting.

The Other Side

The general consensus before 1995 regarding recovering a damaged area biologists believed that the only way to rebuild plant life before anything else. This meant that healthy plants had to be established first, then insects, small rodents, birds, larger herbivores, and then, at last, the top predators fell into place. However, the Endangered Species Act required the reintroduction of top predators before plant life. So, in 1995, the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service reintroduced wolves to Yellowstone National Park. Since then the ecological effect named the trophic cascade has taken place. What has happened is that the grey wolves began something more natural than had been seen in sixty-five years: an ecosystem balance.

The Trophic Cascade

The term trophic refers to different levels of the food chain, with plant life at the bottom and the top level predators at the top. An example of a cascade is that of a stream coming to a waterfall. Once the water of the creek flows down the waterfall until it hits a rock and splits forming two waterfalls which hit rocks and creates other waterfalls. Now we can insert the wolf into the scenario.

The method of using the trophic cascade proved to be more of a success than anyone expected. Because the grey wolf preys on the most vulnerable, the diseased, the young, old, weak, and injured, individuals, of the ungulate population, herds of elk, moose, and deer. Because of the wolves method of hunting, it aids in the regulation herd size distribution which impacts biodiversity. Otherwise, elk, deer, moose overgraze the vegetation, which leads to the degradation of their habitat. Which in turn, leads to damaging effects on other native wildlife.

When the wolves were removed, smaller predator grew and with growth increase their range. This led to exploitation of their prey. An example of this occurred in the southeastern United States when red wolves were eliminated. After the red wolves elimination, the raccoon and coyote numbers rose sharply. This caused the reduction of wild turkeys and small predators such as foxes which preyed on smaller mammals. The smaller mammals were found to be responsible for infesting ticks with Lyme disease and with the more significant populations of smaller mammals Lyme disease has spread.

Because of the deer, elk and moose willow and aspen stands have regenerated. Along with the restoration of streambed vegetation native habitats for native birds, fish, and beaver. Aquatic habitats were improved by stabilizing channels and controlling erosion.

The impact on the survival of pronghorn, for the better because of the competition between coyote and wolves. Yellowstone National Park reported in 2007 that in some areas of the park the coyote population had been reduced by 50 percent. As a result, the increase in the pronghorn population was seen to rise from 20 percent to 70 percent. The populations of the red fox also saw an increase.

Eagles, bears, and magpies have benefited from the presence of the wolf because these carrion-feeders live on the remains left by wolves. The remains of the kills by wolves help other species survive stress filled winters.

The return of the grey wolves has also has helped aquatic, riparian vegetation. Sin the ungulates are no longer overgrazing the plant life along stream beds has grown stronger. Beaver had also returned to Yellowstone.

Conclusion

Many a time, sitting around campfires and I have stared at the starry canopy above wondered at the mind that put together this amazing world. After the research I’ve done, I am convinced that our wolves are an intricate part of our ecology. I do believe that animals should be able to run and free. That is when they are the most beautiful. I do not condone disbanding hunting, but I do not like methods being used.,  such as hunting from airplanes or using automatic weapons. Iconic predators such as the grizzly bear and the grey wolf are not food. However when money is involved the environment and ecology lose.

  1. http://www.y petersenshunting.cdrom/uncategonalirized/6-reasons-to-hunt-wolves/#ixzz4tLiyapVI

2nd Amendment Freedoms Vs. Life, Liberty, Pursuit of Happiness

No flag waving. Just short and personal. Too many lives have been lost because of this nation’s bloodlust. I would like you to consider this scenario. Consider the death toll, if the Las Vegas shooter had access to silencers. The same proposition that the House of Representatives will be considering. If you still support second amendment freedoms, then I challenge you to seek out the family members of the latest casualties and explain to them your gun ownership rights are more important than their loved one’s life.

A Laymen’s Look At The Paris Accord

A Layman’s Look At The Paris Accord

When I heard of the President’s decision to leave the Paris Agreement, I was discouraged, but when I thought about it: his decision reminded me of a line from one of my favorite movies. In the movie the Wrath of Khan, in an anti-climatic scene, a dying Spock whispers to Captain Kirk “Logic dictates that the needs of many outweigh the needs of the few.” In the president’s mind, the needs of the few outweigh the needs of the many.

 When I first heard of the Paris Accord I wanted to shout from the rooftop. This was the first time these many nations came together to agree on a strategy for a major crisis. That is other than war. So when Trump announced that the U. S. was going to withdraw from the Paris Accord. In my mind, I heard “the needs of the few outweigh the the of the many.”

 148 nations met adopt green energy resources and to limit the rise in global temperatures. At the same time, these countries are cooperating to cope with the impact of unavoidable climate change. What the agreement acknowledges is that the threat of climate change is urgent and irreversible. The signatories felt that the problem of emission reduction could only be addressed through the cooperation of all countries.

What is the effect of the cuts?

      According to the agreement: “Holding the increase in global average temperature to well below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.”

The goal of 2 degrees as a limit had been discussed for several years. The global warming will still increase, but it won’t be as significant if nothing was done. The agreement notes that even if every signatory meets their obligation of 2 degrees world temperatures will still rise by 2 degrees. However, this is just a first step. It is the hope of all the signatories that the world will figure out how to get to the 2-degree goal, in time.

The accord goes onto a goal of pursuing loftier limits of 1.5 degrees temperature increase. The agreement states, “and to continue the efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 degrees C above pre-industrial levels, recognizing that this would significantly reduce the risks and impacts of climate change.”

 If the initial target of 2 is an ambitious goal, the Paris Accord goes to further suggest an even harder ambitious goal. The reason for the second ambitious goal was because of the campaigning of small island nations. These countries argued “noting that even if the temperature increase was held at 2 degrees, the resulting rise in sea levels would devastating for them.

Those island nations weren’t able to establish the 1.5 degrees as the primary target; the representatives were successful getting it into the Paris Accord. The reality is the 2-degree goal is lofty, and no one is sure if or how that is going to be achieved. The 2 degree Celsius may be the target, but world leaders have not figured out how to obtain it.

I am sure you have heard the figure $100 billion dollars in conjunction with the Paris Accord. This money is to be used to help developing countries swap from fossil fuels to greener resources and also to adapt to the effects of climate change. This contribution is the bottom level estimate of developed countries would have to contribute. Over the years this contribution is going to rise.

 The nations do not expect that they will be able to reduce emissions shortly. When the countries came to Paris every one of them had a voluntary pledge. Those pledges are now codified which sets a framework for the reductions to begin by 2020. That year is also the projected time to submit long term plans for the future. Not a pledge for the short term, but for one for future generations.

 The one element of the deal that President Barack Obama supported was that in the year 2020. In 2020 the reductions are supposed to begin. Every five years, every nations target will be reevaluated to move the world closer to the 2-degree target.

 President Obama support for this idea was to have each country’s goals submitted 9-12 months before they are finalized. This allows time to be created for other nations can seek clarity about the proposed targets. The goals should reflect progress from earlier targets. The target should be the highest each country can achieve. This framework should drive climate ambition while technologies improve and circumstances changes.

The target date for climate improvement is roughly mid-century or 2050. That is when the world is supposed to meet the goal of zero emissions of green house gases. However, no one expects the world to quit using every form of technology that greenhouse gases use. One example is the removal of carbon dioxide which could be accomplished by growing more trees. I guess that is why President Trump targeted Giant Sequoia National Monument. Those trees absorb two-thirds of the carbon dioxide for their species.

Personal Conclusion

 I have to agree with Trump’s supporters that the document is a lot of words. However, it is a lot of words targeting a particular problem setting real goals, not just talking about it. If we do not believe there is a critical issue with climate change: Please consider this all buildings and vehicles emitting fossil fuel emissions for ninety decades. Don’t you think there could be some damage?

 

 

 

 

 

America The Beautiful

         Do you remember the patriotic song “America the Beautiful?” If President Trump chooses to close the 27 national monuments, which he has targeted by executive order for oil, mining, and logging, we will start singing a new song? I don’t find any aesthetic beauty in oil wells sticking up all over the horizon, especially in the Bear Ears National Monument, Giant Sequoia National Park, Yellowstone, or Canyon of the Ancients Monument. These places attract millions of people a year to view the scenery and wildlife. They employ people and produce income. But you know that? Right? All of the 27 targeted monuments were created under the Antiquities Act.

         Some Sequoias are more than 3200 years old and have a height of 250 ft. Since we all know that trees produce oxygen. Have you ever imagined how much oxygen has been created I have a few figures to give you? The amount of oxygen a tree can produce depends on several factors. I want you to consider that the number and ways that they are presented depend on how oxygen is produced. These figures and ways depending on the species of a tree, its age, and its health.

           “You’ll hear a range of numbers and ways of presenting them because the amount of oxygen produced by a tree depends on the species of a tree, its age, its health, and on the tree’s surroundings. According to the Arbor Day Foundation, “a mature leafy tree produces as much oxygen in a season as 10 people inhale in a year.”

McAliney, Mike. Arguments for Land Conservation: Documentation and Information Sources for Land Resources Protection, Trust for Public Land, Sacramento, CA, December 1993:

“One acre of trees annually consumes the amount of carbon dioxide equivalent to that produced by driving an average car for 26,000 miles.”

       ” A 100-ft tree, an 18″ diameter at its base, produces 6,000 pounds of oxygen.”

        To me, the obvious reason for targeting this iconic park is that Trump and his fanatical followers are still pushing their climate change denial agenda.

Bears Ears National Monument 

                

         This is a place whose story came out of the Wild West. The monument was set aside to stop the pillaging of an area rich in Native American artifacts. Local Native Americans in 2009 came together to protect the spiritual and archaeological sites. Through seven years a coalition developed between five local tribes and local outdoor and environmental groups. The coalition formed the Bears Ears Intertribal Coalition.

            President Barack Obama heard their cries for help. When the Utah delegation failed to resolve the situation, President Obama made the area a national monument. For me, this is just not another attack on the environment, it’s lazy thinking by lazy leaders that are more consumed by greed by progress and the safety of mankind.

Canyons of the Ancients Monument                                            

          This site has the largest concentration of archaeological sites in the country according to the Bureau of Land Management. The Bureau of Land Management and 26 local tribes manage the areas.
Just as on the previous monuments this is an assault by Trump and friends from oil and mining. It is also driving the youth of America to learn about other cultures that occupied our country.

I have mentioned three of twenty sites targeted by Trump via executive order. He has targeted destroying opportunities to learn other cultures, opportunities to honor other cultures. These sites produce jobs and money to the areas.

If you believe these, and Ironwood Forest, Vermillion Cliffs, Sonoran Desert, Grand Canyon-Parshant, Carrizo Plain, San Michael Mountains, Berryessa Snow Mountain, Mojave Trails, Sand to Snow Mountains, Craters of the Moon VI, Hansford Ranch, Grand Staircase-Escalante, Cascade-Siskiyou, Basin and Range, Gold Butte, Rio Grande del Norte, Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks, Upper Missouri River Breaks, and Katahdin Woods and Waters, are worth saving. Then please contact your representative, or senator, or the Secretary of Interior.                                      

An Attack on Creation

                                 An Attack on Creation

The reason I loved to camp was I was able to observe as many of God’s wonders as I could. For me, the best part of those camping trips was sitting around a camp fire gazing at the stars. While I stared at the stars, I had a sense of peace. It gave me time to contemplate on the awesome power of our creator. Everyday people across the world benefit in multiple ways by elements of creation.

Ever since the last 1970 humanity has become aware of depletion of the ozone layer due to green house gases. Ever since the Montreal Protocol of 1987, an international treaty of nations dedicated, to the phasing out the substances that have caused the problem. These chemicals are man-made and contain chlorine and bromine. The ozone layer provides protection from the sun’s ultraviolet rays.

Another debate which confuses the issue is global warming which leads to climate change. The causes of global warming are carbon dioxide and other heat causing gases are forming a blanket in the upper atmosphere and trapping heat around the earth.

As of January 20, 2017, the client change deniers have a new self-proclaimed leader. He believes that climate change is a hoax, started by China. President Trump and his administration, people that benefit from the drilling and mining of the fossil fuels. This group argues that the EPA creates restrictive measures on the oil and mining industry.

  • President Trump is attacking all parts of creation. So far the attacks have been in the following form:
  • On February 1 Congress dismantles the Stream Protection Rule which guaranteed clean water for communities near mining operations.
  • February 28, of this year received an easement from the Army Corp. of Engineers to construct the Dakota Pipe line
  • March 24, President Trump gives his approval to continue building the Keystone Pipeline

April 3, President Trump signed a bill which allows wolves and their pups to be killed in their dens. This bill also allows bears to be gunned down in bait stations. These acts are allowed in Alaska’s national wildlife refuges. Also the act allows aerial gunning and the use of steel-jawed leg hold traps. This type of trap holds the animal in place until they are killed.

In the budget for 2018 The President has proposed steep budget cuts in the EPA and the ESA. Also, the President and various congressional members are calling for the elimination of the EPA and the ESA.

Since, these attacks were announced, I knew I was going to become involved. The first step, would be to learn as much as I could.

The EPA’s Mission

air polution

The Environmental Protection Agency(EPA) mission is to protect this nation’s citizens from significant risks to human health and environment in their living, learning, and work places. Their best efforts to reduce environmental risks nationally, are based on the best available scientific data. It enforces federal laws that protect human health and the environment, fairly and effectively. The factors that are used in establishing environmental policies natural resources, human health, economic growth, energy, transportation, agriculture, industry, and international trade. All parts of society have access to information to participate in managing human health and environmental risks. These parts include communities, individuals, businesses, state and local and tribal government.

Water pollution

How the EPA Succeeds

First they develop and enforce regulations. After our federal government lawmakers create an environmental law, the EPA uses the law by writing regulations. They set standards which all to states are required to enforce through their own regulations. If the states and tribes fail to meet the standards, the EPA helps them. The EPA ensures that companies understand the requirements.

The EPA uses grants to achieve their goals by using grants. These grants are given to state environmental programs, non profits, and educational institutions. The money is used for scientific studies that helps the EPA make decisions for community cleanups.

This organization uses’ laboratories scattered throughout the nation. They do this to identify and attempt to solve environmental problems. In an effort to learn more the EPA shares information with other countries, academic institutions, other agencies, and organizations in the private sector.

The EPA can’t and don’t protect the environment on their own. Some of the organizations that the EPA works with are businesses, non profit organizations and state and local governments through dozens of partnerships. Some of these partnerships include conservation of water and energy, reducing green house gases, and get a handle on pesticide risks.

Clean air

New Energy Technologies

Below is a list of four new energy technologies. While there are many more tested and viable. This short list makes the point new energy technologies are here.

  • Radiant Energy: on some devices can produce the same results which are estimated at less than 1% of the cost, of ordinary electricity. However it does not behave like normal electricity which has led to a misunderstanding in the scientific community. Radio Energy is a term most often used in radiometry, solar energy, lighting and heating.
  • Permanent Magnets: Dr. Tom Bearden has two working models of a device called permanent magnetic powered electrical transformers. These devices use six watts of power as input to control a magnetic field coming out of a magnet. By channel the magnetic field to a series of output coils rapidly and repeatedly can produce 96 watts of output without any moving parts.
  • Super Efficient Electrolysis: When water is hit with its own molecular resonant frequency it collapses into water and oxygen gas, with little electrical input. For the cost of water Hydrogen can drive engines like your car.
  • This is a small list of the least known technologies. The full lists of dozens of technologies that are well tested, known, and proven. Still there are forces in the world that keep people from learning about them. There are four forces to keeping these and other technologies from being made available. These forces are (1) wealthy families and their central banking institutions, (2) national governments jockeying for leadership positions, (3) Deluded inventors and con men, (4) and all the rest of us.

The Endangered Species Act of 1973

This act was designed to protect imperiled animal and plant species from facing extinction. Imperiled species are the result of economic growth and inadequate concern for conservation. The Endangered Species Act was signed into law by President Richard M. Nixon on December 28, 1973. At that time the U. S. Supreme Court found that the “the plain text of Congress was to halt and reverse the trend toward species extinction at whatever cost.”1 Two agencies administer the act; they are the United States Fish Wildlife Service(FSW) and the National Oceanic Atmosphere Administration(NOAA).

The call for wildlife conservation started in 1900. This occurred after the near extinction of the bison and the disappearance of passenger pigeons. Some cause for the low numbers of wildlife were communities and farm land grew, the widespread use of pesticides.

A tragic story which gathered widespread attention was that of the Whooping Crane. This bird’s range extended from southern Canada to Mexico, from Utah to the Atlantic Ocean. By 1890, the Whooping Crane had disappeared from its primary breeding grounds in north central United States. This was due to unregulated hunting and the habitat loss. In 1941 the number of estimated Whooping Cranes in the wild was 16. A conservation highlight in 2007 was the statement of 340 Whooping Cranes in the wild and another 145 found in captivity.

Conclusion

The first conclusion I have drawn since I started my research. That the current administration and its supporters want to eliminate any organization that stands in the way of profit. However, they don’t realize what has happened since air and water pollution became part of the national debate.

In a report last July 1, 2016, Fiona McDonald reported in “The Hole in the Ozone is Finally Closing Up” that:

“Scientists have found evidence that the hole in the ozone layer over Antarctica is finally beginning to heal. If progress continues, it should be closed permanently by 2050.”2

In an article in the New York Times and written by Henry Fountain on June 20, 2016 wrote, “Full recovery of the ozone hole is not expected until, the middle of the century.”3

Both articles were reporting on results from a study led by Susan Solomon, a lead researcher, at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

At about the same time the National Aeronautical Space Administration(NASA)speculated that the ozone hole would be closed by the year 2100. The point I want to make is that the human race is successfully changing the amounts of chlorine and bromine in the atmosphere. So the agencies that our president is targeting in his attacks are a benefit to mankind.

Not only has the president targeted the EPA through budget proposals, but through naming its new director, Scott Pruitt. Scott Pruitt was the Oklahoma Attorney General, and has close ties to the fossil fuel industry. Pruitt rejects, the scientific consensus, that human activity is a primary cause to climate change.

I am not sure why the president targeted the ESA. But, for whatever reason the attack is extreme and cruel. In the bible, we are told, “everything has a purpose.” That is what amazes me about the creation. Just as God gave everything a purpose, mankind was given the ability to adapt. Just like the animal kingdom has the ability to adapt to changes in their environment so can humans. The proof is the studies mentioned earlier and the rise in the number of people getting involved in marches and signing petitions.

Since these attacks began the following environmental organizations have responded; Sierra Club; Center for Biological Diversity; and Friends of Earth. Specifically the Center for Biological Diversity celebrated the announcement of a victory for the environment on May 1st, when Congress passed a budget bill funding the government throughout 2017. Secondly, almost none of the 160 anti environment riders passed into the final bill. The Center accredited people for people telephoning, and emailing members of Congress, and attending town hall meetings, for this success.

I have left out our administration’s attack on senior citizens and the poor. I have two reasons for this: I didn’t want this essay to be a rant regarding that subject. Secondly, I have seen the best of our world, enjoying pristine water and beautiful skies. I have seen wolves, bears, moose, and an eagle is their natural environment and I want those experiences to be available to other people. The earth doesn’t need humans to survive. However, humanity does need clean air and water to survive.

Finally, I leave you with the words of a former statesman that fought for conservation over a hundred years ago.

On May 13, 1908, in a speech at the White House, to a Governors Conference on conservation. As President of the United States Theodore Roosevelt said:

“We have become great in a material sense because of our lavish use of our resources, and we have just reason to be proud of our growth. But the time has come to inquire seriously what will happen when our forests are gone, when the coal, the iron, the oil, and the gas are exhausted, when the soils will have further impoverished and washed into the streams, polluting the rivers, denuding the fields. These questions do not relate only to the next century or to the next generation. One distinguishing characteristic of really civilized men is foresight; we have to as a nation, exercise foresight for this nation in the future; and if we do not exercise that foresight, dark will be our future!”4

I believe the above quote is correct in that it foretells the junction that our nation and our leaders find themselves. Roosevelt continued to say:

“We should exercise foresight now, as the ordinarily prudent man exercises foresight in conserving and widely using the property which contains the assurance of well being for himself and his children. We want to see him exercise forethought for the next generation and need to exercise it in some fashion ourselves as a nation for the next generation.”5

References

1.Endangered Species Act. (2017, April 06). Retrieved April 22, 2017, from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Endangered_Species_Act

2.http://www.sciencealert.com/the-ozone-hole-is-finally-closing-up,ScienceAlert,The Hole in the Ozone is Finally Closing Up

3.http://www.nytimes.com/2016/07/01/science/ozone hole show-sign of shrinking, scientists say, Henry Fountain

4.Roosevelt: In His Own Words, Weider History, Pg: 74

5.Roosevelt: In His Own Words, Weider History, Pg. 74

 

My Twenty Four Day

Don’t cry over the past, it’s gone. Don’t stress about the future, it hasn’t arrived. Live in the present and make it beautiful.

I first heard this expression twenty two years ago, while learning how to manage my life. I learned how to live one day at a time. It has been hard to follow this particular lifestyle. Below, I offer an explanation to as to why I have problems with the quote above and one day at a time.

Past

I know the past is gone, but we should cry over it because there is so much that can be learned from it. I have studied history all of my life. It first started with my father and kitchen table conversations. He had lived through the Prohibition, the Depression, both World Wars, the Korean conflict and Vietnam War. Because I was born on July 4, he made sure that I memorized the Declaration of Independence. Belief in God and love for country were to two parts of his mantra. That is why the fourth paragraph of the Declaration of Independence is so important to me.

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness”

And the following verse.

Genesis 1:27

Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; and let them rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over the cattle and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”

I remember being taught in grade school that many of the early settlers of our country came in order to escape religious persecution. By the time I got to college the new teaching method was to get students to question everything which was I started to leave my naivete about this county. In college while studying s ancient history, I had a professor whose last name was Astur. He taught us that although dates were importance he wanted us to concentrate on the significance of the events. I studied ancient history so I would understand biblical times because I wanted to enter the theology. However, I would never fulfill my dream job.

I would consider my father a patriotic man. However, I think not serving his country during World War II weighed on him. But when he notified his employer that he received a draft notice he was informed that he was needed in the factory because he was employed by an essential war industry. Citizenship was very important to him; he made sure I was aware of right and duty to vote and serve on jury duty. Our relationship took a heavy hit during the Vietnam War. I was against it and he thought his country could do no wrong. That was until May 4, 1970. That was the date of the Kent State Massacre. A day in Ohio National Guardsman opened up on some students protesting against the war in Vietnam.

My father, who worked in a war industry during World War II, told me of a notion that the Nazis used in World War II. That notion was referred to as the fifth column. The fifth columnist as they were concerned in the early forties for the allies. The fifth column occupied a foreign country and recruit future members of the party to sabotage the political system and governmental works. After the war the United States became a superpower. And like other super powers throughout history the United States became a military power when it had so much more to offer.

Present

Fast forward seventy years. There is less emphasis on church and more on shopping or some sport activity with the children. We live in a throwaway society. Values, history, and heritage are all easily tossed in the trash. When I was growing up God, Country and family. Families got together for holidays and birthdays. Marriage was meant to be forever. Now the importance of those values has diminished. Everybody is in a hurry.

I believe the high speed society is a result of the development of Information Technology. One of the inventions in the early 1980s was the personal computer, which heightened interest in the digital age. I had been working in Information Technology by four years. The Internet started in the 1960s by the US government. Originally used for academia it became widespread by the 1990s. As interest grew in the Internet, the popularity of personal computers exploded prices dropped. When I first bought a PC all a person needed, was a telephone connection. Then came high speed networks the individual user chose between satellite and cable networks. Then you needed a firewall and then all sorts of hardware and software protection. Hacking, phishing, and id theft grew rampant. A device known as the mobile phone was developed, which added wireless technology and allowed people to become unplugged from the grid. Mobile phones have now technologies such as digital photography, and texting.

Every thing has to be done instantly. After forty-two years in the business I decided to professionally unplug from IT. A heart attack occurred ten months before was enough encouragement for me to slow down. Instead of instant meals that take very little time to cook in a microwave we are using fresh vegetables and less salt. Instead of buying meat in a supermarket I make a trip to a butcher shop every three months.

When I retired, I wanted to read and writing. My hopes were to write short stories and a novel, but since the November 8 election my interest has turned to essays and personal opinion.

Future

My vision of the future after the election of 2016 was fairly gloomy. I am proud that there are citizens in this country willing to stand up enough for their beliefs and are willing to protest. I just wish I was healthy enough to join them. The problem is that with the hint of Russian interference in our election I wonder how Putin would go to stabilize Trump’s reign. Any hint of any kind of influence by any foreign should have provoked Congress to stop the inauguration until he was cleared. I hope this nation survives the next four years.

 

Memories of the Environment

This post is in reaction to the nomination and confirmation of Scott Pruitt as head of the EPA and the administration proposed plan to abolish all the work that organization has accomplished. Below is a true story of a 16 year old boy and his incredible experience.

Have you ever seen a bald eagle, in flight, in the wild. I have and it is one of the most beautiful sites you could ever see. The wide wing spread in a clear blue sky high above the trees. When I had this particular vision I was on ten day canoe trip out of the Wilderness Canoe Base which borders in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area. The Boundary Waters is part of the Superior National Forest in Minnesota.

We were paddling toward our home base when our guide pointed that he spotted three eagles. These three eagles were perched  in the trees, on a hillside high above us. Looking straight into the sun all I could see were shapes at the top of the trees. My brother, who was steering the canoe asked me if I saw them. I told him I wasn’t sure. He had the bright idea of attracting one of the eagles so I could see them., so he had the broad side of his paddle on the surface of the water. Sensing that a fish had surfaced one of the eagles leaned forward and dove toward us. What I remember is that I was mesmerized by the fall and then several hundred feet above us, the eagle spread its wings. My jaw dropped open at the size of the wing span. All my life I have lived in a city and the comparison of a sparrow’s wing spread to an eagle is enormous to a sixteen year old boy. As the eagle grew closer I dove in the bottom of the canoe. My brother was laughing hard. On the same trip I saw a moose feeding off the bottom of the lake, a bear swimming in the lake. and a wolf staring at me from the edge of the woods. These are all precious memories from the past. This was way back in 1967.

At the same time back in civilized society factories were belching smoke and flame into the sky. Rivers smelled from whatever factories and society dumped into them. Suds floated on top of the water ways. Times Beach, Missouri was closed down because of Dioxin contamination in 1983.

My whole point is that our society has done some work to clear up the effects of pollution and to lessen its impact. But, if President Trump and the Republican party succeed in reducing the authority of the EPA and opening up public lands the only time our next generations will be able to see any wildlife in the wild will be in a picture book or in a movie. Add ignoring the effect of climate change and the human race is pretty well doomed.

From the King James version:

Genesis 1: 28. “And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.”

God didn’t say a  thing about destroying the earth.

http://biblehub.com/genesis/1-28.htm