Conservation Pledge vs. Pledge of Allegiance

by Gailstrail on January 26, 2016

Conservation PledgeAs a sustainable life advocate I’m continual educating myself about sustainability in all its forms. Just this month I discovered the The Outdoor Life Conservation Pledge the pledge was written in 1946 for Outdoor Life’s membership. They boast that Presidents Harry S Truman was included in their membership. President Truman was a champion of conservation. The pledge is short and to the point.

I pledge to protect and conserve the natural resources of America. I promise to educate future generations so they may become caretakers of our water, air, land and wildlife.

Al Gore was also a member of The Outdoor and took this pledge. What keeps running through my mind, why weren’t  we all taking this pledge in school? The Conservation Pledge clearly supports sustainable industry.

Instead I grew up like most, taking the Pledge of Allegiance.  

I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.

Exactly what does this pledge mean?

  1. Pledging to abide by the rules of display and care of our flag.
  2. Pledging allegiance to elected individuals and giving them power to organize my state or country.
  3.  Pledging allegiance to one Nation under God. (there is continual debate to take ‘under god’ out of the pledge.)
  4. Pledging to never divide or separate (to separate into two or pieces.)
  5. Pledging to liberty (the state or condition of people who are able to act and speak freely).
  6. Pledging justice for all (the process or result of using laws to fairly judge and punish crimes and criminals).

The Pledge of Allegiance was composed by Colonel George Balch in 1887, revised by Francis Bellamy in 1892 and formally adopted by Congress as the pledge in 1942. The last  change took place in 1954 when the words “under God” were added.

Congressional sessions open with the recital of the Pledge, as do some government and private organizations, schools and the Supreme Court.

Now, as I look closely at the Pledge of Allegiance it seems a narrow and self-absorbed pledge when compared to Conservation Pledge. The Pledge of Allegiance does nothing to address the sustainability of our nation and does nothing to make sure our basic needs as a people are secured; our air, water, land and wildlife are kept safe. The Pledge of Allegiance instead leaves it up to a few people to decide what our priorities should be. Our centuries of imitation prove that we have let a few men and industry dominate and create a diabolical trail of destructive development. The masses of people have worked and played idly by while industries destructive behavior continues. It is time for a new pledge. A sustainable pledge.

I’m not baffled by why President’s Truman and Al Gore did not insist that the Conservation Pledge be adopted by Congress.Why? Because industry for centuries has always held a tight reign on ‘elected officials’.  Industry will never be okay with a sustainable pledge. Industry will never will be okay and want to allow a pledge which cares for our natural resources, educates future generations so they may become caretakers of our water, air, land and wildlife. I am baffled that the 1887 pledge, with such narrow and self-absorbed content, has not been re-written.

Our nation needs a reform in what we pledge to. We need a pledge to sustainability! A pledge of this nature will bring us to a nation we can be proud.

Happy Conservation Pledge Trails!



Know Thyself“The human body is the most fascinating and fantastic machine in existence. No one understands all of its many mysteries; and no single source can do justice to its many parts.” – World Education

The majority of the human race have little knowledge about how incredibly we are. Our body is made up of millions of synchronized single-celled organisms.  Each cell doing a specific job, taking on every exposure. Everything we eat, breath and drink effects all our millions of organisms. The wellness, sickness and disease of our society gives evidence to what exposures’ we’ve allowed in our world. We are changing with every breath we take.

I believe World Education when they say,

“The human body is the most fascinating and fantastic machine in existence. No one understands all of its many mysteries; and no single source can do justice to its many parts.”

Our society has departmentalized and standardized education until it is choking every bit of creativity out of our children; giving focus to certain things and minimizing the importance of other things, and leaving some things entirely out. Education should mirror the human body and work in synchronization!

I believe the Ancient Sages, all seven, from Greece. They were philosophers, statesmen and law-givers. They laid the foundation for western culture. They gathered in Delphi to inscribe “know thyself” at the entry to its sacred oracle. They believed:

 Self-knowledge is all-encompassing. What is learned on one scale of experience can be applied to all scales. It is the highest form of knowledge, surpassing all other knowledge. Self-knowledge is also timeless, which means that what is gained in one era, benefits all subsequent generations.

What exactly does this statement mean? Philosophers have been talking about the meaning of this for centuries. Most focusing on philosophy and the mind. However, I believe the statement should be all-encompassing, include the entire human body system. Everything is connected in our bodies.

Self-knowledge. Knowing oneself. Who am I? Don’t we all want to know the answer? Yet, discovery has alluded us, been denied to the majority of us. All-encompassing. Means surrounding everything. So self-knowledge is surrounds everything. Having self-knowledge integrates all other knowledge; reading, writing, arithmetic, science, etc.. Self-knowledge is timeless. What we learn in one era, benefits all generations that follow.

Truer words were never spoken than what these ancient sages carved in stone. I want to feel good. I want my family and friends to feel good. I want to find out what is possible with my body. I have a feeling, as much as I’ve tried to be kind to myself over some 40 years, I’ve been battling unseen forces and toxins for decades. Playing catch up is difficult, time consuming, but oh so worth the journey.

Knowing what I know I am  doing a better job taking care of myself and my family. I’m spreading the word about the challenges each of us must take on if we are to heal ourselves, our families, our friends (furry or not). To overcome the challenges we have to take on the responsibility to insure that those who represent us in our governing bodies are on the same page. Making sure they are looking out for who they call the ‘ordinary’ population.

Open your heart, your mind and make or find time to know those you would have represent you. Let them know your are not just an ‘ordinary’ human, but with the correct attention to appropriate governing you have the potential to be an ‘extraordinary’ human being. It will take time to discover how truly remarkable we ‘ordinary’ humans are, but oh so worth the journey!

I’ve been traveling this road for about 40 years: I truly understand how the majority of us have been short changed in so many ways. Possibly one of our biggest challenges is to demand more time and study to what the ancient sages felt so strongly about: ‘Know Thyself”.

We can no longer afford to skip over educating ourselves about what makes us extraordinary and how we get there.  We owe it to our society to do ‘justice to our many parts’. We can no longer afford to be thought of as ‘ordinary’, when in fact each of us are extra-ordinary!  We can no longer give so much control over our bodies to doctors and pharmaceuticals.

We are more than a ‘workforce’ helping industry to be ‘competitive’. Our National Science Standards want

“To address the critical issues of U.S. competitiveness and to better prepare the workforce, A Framework for K-12 Science Education proposes a new approach to K-12 science education that will capture students’ interest and provide them with the necessary foundational knowledge in the field.”

The United States as of September 2014 was in 134 wars around the globe. You may ask, what does all these wars have to do with knowing who I am. Well, in my mind the trillions of dollars paid to corporations to fuel the wars diverts our tax dollars from what is truly important. I would rather the majority of these trillions of dollars be kept at home. Are you feeling better because of these wars? Do these trillions of dollars spent give you peace? Do they help you meet your mortgage? Keep you well?

I’m 72, I’ve worked all my life, still working. My terror is not in a far away place. My terror came with the notice that I would not get a raise in my Social Security. My terror comes from the fact that I will never get to stop working. My terror comes from affording to do and buy the things that keep me and my family well. Staying healthy and active is expensive. Terror is on our streets, in the faces of our homeless and poor. Ask these ‘ordinary’ people how they feel about all our wars around the globe.

Yes, those who would do harm to life on this planet must be stopped in their tracks. However, life on this planet takes many forms. We need to re-evaluate our priorities about whose life we are protecting and how we are protecting it. War  has been our ‘go to’ answer for centuries and men have been pulling the trigger for centuries.  We need to look at outcome and results. It’s no working. War does not benefit the majority of our citizens. The main beneficiary in war is corporations.



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