The Corner

Celebrate Civilization Day, Not Earth Day

Frequent NRO contributor Robert Zubrin will be giving a talk on Tuesday, April 24, at the Hudson Institute in Washington, D.C., discussing his new book Merchants of Despair: Radical Environmentalists, Criminal Pseudo-Scientists, and the Fatal Cult of Antihumanism. In the book, Zubrin chronicles and indicts the ideology that motivated the horrific population-control movement (the crimes of which are described in this excerpt from the book), the eugenics movement of a century ago, today’s radical greens, and other related projects. The discussion will start at 5:30 p.m. and will be followed by a book-signing and reception.

This lecture comes hard on the heels of the April 22 celebration of Earth Day, the annual holiday of the environmental movement. But, as Zubrin points out in an article in the Washington Times, the antihuman ideology that permeates much of modern environmentalism has given it a legacy that is hardly worth celebrating.

From the brutal policies of population control advocated by Paul Ehrlich (whose protégé John Holdren is now President Obama’s science adviser) to the incredible suffering caused by the banning of the malaria-controlling pesticide DDT, protecting the Earth has all too often been used as justification for bringing poverty and pain to humanity.

A sensible environmental movement would not be rooted in the antihuman ideology that underlies much of the rhetoric we hear on Earth Day. As Zubrin argues:

The Earth is not endangered by humanity. But humanity is being seriously harmed by those who portray us as a threat and seek to constrain humanity’s numbers, activities, creativity and liberty.

Instead of Earth Day, we should be celebrating Civilization Day.

Sounds like a good idea. Maybe we should celebrate Civilization Day on March 25 every year to mark the anniversary of the birth of Norman Borlaug, who launched the Green Revolution that has saved a billion lives and put the lie to the Malthusian fear-mongering of the antihumanists.

— Adam Keiper is editor of The New Atlantis and a fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center.

Most Popular

The Trail Leading Back to the Wuhan Labs

It is understandable that many would be wary of the notion that the origin of the coronavirus could be discovered by some documentary filmmaker who used to live in China. Matthew Tye, who creates YouTube videos, contends he has identified the source of the coronavirus — and a great deal of the information that ... Read More

The Trail Leading Back to the Wuhan Labs

It is understandable that many would be wary of the notion that the origin of the coronavirus could be discovered by some documentary filmmaker who used to live in China. Matthew Tye, who creates YouTube videos, contends he has identified the source of the coronavirus — and a great deal of the information that ... Read More
World

All Signs Point to China

Just one big story today: collecting and sorting through what we know about the coronavirus's origins, and what makes sense and what doesn’t in the theory that it originated from someone eating bats or pangolins from the Huanan Seafood Market. What We Know and What We Don’t Know about the Source of ... Read More
World

All Signs Point to China

Just one big story today: collecting and sorting through what we know about the coronavirus's origins, and what makes sense and what doesn’t in the theory that it originated from someone eating bats or pangolins from the Huanan Seafood Market. What We Know and What We Don’t Know about the Source of ... Read More
Film & TV

America’s Favorite Movie

For more than a decade, readers volunteering their ratings on the movie site IMDb have declared The Shawshank Redemption (1994) their favorite film of all time. (Number two is The Godfather). Unlike the unholy tablets that are the box office charts, which are strongly linked to marketing budgets and show a ... Read More
Film & TV

America’s Favorite Movie

For more than a decade, readers volunteering their ratings on the movie site IMDb have declared The Shawshank Redemption (1994) their favorite film of all time. (Number two is The Godfather). Unlike the unholy tablets that are the box office charts, which are strongly linked to marketing budgets and show a ... Read More
Media

The Media Owe Senator Tom Cotton an Apology

One of the biggest issues people have with the mainstream press these days is that some of its members are so insulated that they end up buying into and promoting false narratives without actually checking these narratives' veracity. That seems to be exactly what happened in mid February, when major outlets ... Read More
Media

The Media Owe Senator Tom Cotton an Apology

One of the biggest issues people have with the mainstream press these days is that some of its members are so insulated that they end up buying into and promoting false narratives without actually checking these narratives' veracity. That seems to be exactly what happened in mid February, when major outlets ... Read More
Politics & Policy

Welcome Back, Plastic Bags

Single-use plastic bags are a miracle of modern technology. Cheap, light, convenient, and ubiquitous, they provide an elegant solution to a problem. If you recycle them, as most people do, and put your rubbish in them, that creates a net reduction in carbon emissions compared with buying the heavier, thicker ... Read More
Politics & Policy

Welcome Back, Plastic Bags

Single-use plastic bags are a miracle of modern technology. Cheap, light, convenient, and ubiquitous, they provide an elegant solution to a problem. If you recycle them, as most people do, and put your rubbish in them, that creates a net reduction in carbon emissions compared with buying the heavier, thicker ... Read More