D.C. Area Families Take Green to the Extreme
David A. Fahrenthold
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, April 20, 2009
Near Leesburg, a woman parks her hybrid car and erases its computer memory. She doesn't want her husband to find out she's getting just 30-something miles per gallon.
In Takoma Park, a dirty plastic to-go container forces a woman to face down her brother. He thinks she should wash it out and reuse it at another restaurant. She thinks . . . no.
And in western Loudoun County, a family quietly defies a mother's rules. She likes locally raised bacon, whole-grain bread and raw milk. But somebody keeps smuggling in Chef Boyardee.
This is life on the dark -- or at least the cranky -- side of green.
Across the Washington region, a few residents have embraced eco-friendly living with a fervor that makes Al Gore look like an oil company lobbyist. They give up everything from furnace heat (too many emissions) to store-bought meat (too much factory farming) to plans for a second child (too much of everything, given the average American's environmental impact).
Nutty? – yes. But in a free society, people have a right to be nutty, so long as they don’t infringe on the equal rights of others. Often these points of nuttiness have that religious tinge I have mentioned often lately. For example, giving up plans for a second child indicates a distaste for God’s commandment to ‘fill the earth.’ Contrary to what some of these enviro-cranks like to spout, the earth is not nearly full.
But, again, crankiness is the prerogative of the free.
But there is, as we know, much more than the cranky side of ‘green.’ (A word which better describes Kermit the Frog.) There is also a very dark side – unacknowledged in this article – which no free people can afford to ignore.
If you want to give up your furnace, that is your right. But if you want to force others to give up their furnaces, you are very wrong. And that is also the case if your attempt to force others into your environmental idiocy takes the form of manipulating energy policy.
There came a time when people who desired freedom had to wage a war against the British Crown. Is there a time coming when those love freedom will have to wage a war – perhaps even a literal one, as undesirable as that would be – against the dark side of environmentalism?