Elizabeth May’s statement on Earth Day

Elizabeth May (Saanich—Gulf Islands)
2021-04-22 14:00 [p.6032]

Madam Speaker, on April 22, 1970, I was in high school and organized for the first Earth Day. For 50 years, every April 22nd, I have said “Happy Earth Day”. I have to say this year that the words stick in my throat somewhat. If I say “Happy Earth Day” to the earth, which is battered, abused and gasping for breath, what does the earth say?

Brilliant indigenous writer Robin Wall Kimmerer wrote, in Braiding Sweetgrass, that we in our society suffer from “species loneliness, estrangement from the rest of Creation.” However, she gives me hope. She wrote this:

Even a wounded world is feeding us. Even a wounded world holds us, giving us moments of wonder and joy. I choose joy over despair. Not because I have my head in the sand, but because joy is what the earth gives me daily and I must return the gift.
With that, let us all say “Happy Earth Day”.