(c) Copyright 2015 David Dilworth
Ever try breathing air from another planet?
Or eating vegetables grown in another solar system ?
Of course not. We all breathe air from the same atmosphere and eat food grown from the same rain. It may take quite a while for them to get distributed around our entire planet, but eventually it all gets mixed together.
So why does nearly everyone, with a tiny few wonderful exceptions, use a horribly misleading term — “the environment” ?
How insulating, how incorrect, how awful !
Unless we’re discussing Astrophysics, we’re never talking about some distant environment on another planet or in another solar system.
It darn well is OUR environment, the only one we’ve got.
If we ruin it, there is no second chance, no backup, no do-overs.
Apart from — or A-Part-Of ?
“The Environment” indicates something we are separate from or apart from.
Whereas “Our Environment” properly indicates something we are a part of.
When it is explained, most people get it and embrace it, sometimes they just forget to use the correct term.
So when public officials or the media use the misleading term, you have my encouragement to explain the correct usage. 🙂
Indeed, feel free to send them the link to this short article.
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Pope Francis’ (translated) encyclical–
“So the dominion of the Earth should not be taken as a license to fully exploit our environment, but, on the contrary, to be responsible stewards of our time.”
(Note how the USC writer got it wrong, but the Pope got it right.)