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Life IS history in the making. Every word we say, everything we do becomes history the moment it is said or done. Life void of memories leaves nothing but emptiness. For those who might consider history boring, think again: It is who we are, what we do and why we are here. We are certainly individuals in our thoughts and deeds but we all germinated from seeds planted long, long ago.

Monday, April 22, 2013

Earth Day

Earth Day: The History of A Movement

Photograph courtesy AP/Temple University
Ira Einhorn—a leader of nonviolence, drug, and free-love movements in the 1960s—
speaks at Philadelphia's first Earth Day celebration on April 22, 1970.
Across the U.S. the first Earth Day drew an estimated 20 million participants.

Each year, Earth Day is celebrated on April 22 marking the anniversary of what many consider the birth of the modern environmental movement in 1970. This was during a time when protest was of the highest order, especially as war raged in Vietnam. Earth Day, however, did shift conscious awareness away from the war opposition and more toward environmental concerns.

The following photos are courtesy of National Geographic Daily News:

Photo: Student in gas mask smelling a flower.
 Photograph courtesy AP
 On April 22, 1970, the first Earth Day, a college student sniffs a magnolia blossom through a gas mask in New York City. Such street theater--along with teach-ins, rallies, and other events promoting environmental awareness--drew an estimated 20 million people. 

Photo: Teach-In office
 Photograph courtesy AP
 In 1970, with nine staff members (pictured: Judy Moody and Denis Hayes on April 22, 1970) and a $125,000 budget, a Washington, D.C.-based group organized the Environmental Teach-in, which would become became the first Earth Day.

Photo: Crowds of young men and women sit in a park

Photograph by Lambert/Getty Images
 The first Earth Day on April 22, 1970, drew crowds of thousands in cities, on campuses, and in public parks, such as this one, around the U.S.

Photo: Rock band and crowd near Milwaukee River
Photograph courtesy AP
 On the first Earth Day, April 22, 1970, students and activists gather along the polluted Milwaukee River to hear a rock band at the Performing Arts Center in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. 

Photo: Children sweeping a plaza
  Photograph courtesy AP
Students from the Convent of the Sacred Heart School in New York City sweep up the city's Union Square as part of the first Earth Day on April 22, 1970.

Photo: Earth Day rally

Photograph courtesy AP
Approximately 7,000 people gather on Independence Mall in Philadelphia on the first Earth Day--April 22, 1970. 

Photo: Girl on phone with posters 
Photo by Charles Harrity/AP
Earth Day staff member Judy Moody works the phones on April 9, 1970, in the Washington, D.C., office for what was then called the Environmental Teach-in. With just nine staff members, the office relied heavily on volunteers and organizers in other institutions.
Photo: Men picking up trash near Washington Monument
Photograph by Bob Daugherty/AP
Looking hung over from the first Earth Day, litter-filled parks like the National Mall (Washington Monument pictured) in Washington, D.C., on April 23, 1970, partly negated the previous day's environmental message.

"This is sadly the reality of too many environmental activists," said artist Pablo Solomon, who participated in Houston's 1970 Earth Day events.

"The crowds again are often people looking for something to do or have an axe to grind on some other issue. People should practice what they preach.

How do you plan on celebrating Earth Day?