Plant a tree, Shape the Future

Where would we be without trees? This news story on Chester High School students who planted 30 mostly native trees on the school campus, is more important than most people know.

For years environmental groups bemoaned the fact that so few “people of color” populated their ranks. But, with truthful insight, the groups realized that it was because the media, including their very own magazines and brochures, rarely featured faces that where shades of the beiges, tans, browns and deep chocolates that people come in.

The use of only Caucasian faces said to “minorities” that “this is not for you, stay away”. This is not far-fetched given the exclusionary practices in the country in the past.

To give the environmental groups their credit, they have made big strides in changing this unfortunate situation.

Perhaps it was the appointment of Lisa Jackson as the first African-American to head up the Environmental Protection Agency, to spur on the many environmental stories that include “people of color”. Believe me, they weren’t there before.

It is good to see this. It is good to young people of color highlighted for good deeds, especially environmental good deeds. Because, so often it is the negative stereotypes that are given air time.

All of us belong to this Earth. And all of us need to be involved in taking care of this precious place we all call home.

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