I’ve been careful about leaving the news on while the kids are home. With the school shooting and other tragedies, it’s just been too much for them to see.
So imagine my surprise last night when a piece I thought was rather benign on the pollution issues in Beijing caused tears and hysterics in my living room.
My 9-year old son could not believe what he was seeing. He wanted to know how the earth could be so dirty and polluted and how we, as humans, could let this happen.
Is it the cars?
All the things they make, like my Nerf guns?
Why don’t they care?
Why can’t they stop it?
What if that happens here in Los Angeles?
What about our country?
Why do businesses care more about money than fixing this?
Why isn’t ANYONE DOING ANYTHING?
And the tears were streaming. And I did my best to calm him down and tell him many people were trying to do things, but every country was different. And every country had different rules. And even in our country people are fighting those rules.
He thinks those of you fighting the rules are horrible people. He thinks anyone against EPA regulations aimed at helping the earth are good and true and just and he does not care if that means some people don’t have a job because they at least will be able to breathe and drink clean water. He tells me OTHER jobs can be created with new inventions that keep the planet CLEAN. He does not care if that means he does not get a certain toy, he no longer needs it or cares.
The images haunted him all day and night and he would periodically stop his video game to ask me how many people might get sick from that smog. How many people might die. How plants or trees might help.
Then at bedtime, as I tucked him in…he began to softly cry again. He didn’t think there was anything a 9-year old boy could do.
I told him he was wrong.
And now, dear friends, I want to show him he’s wrong.
Help me find things a 9-year old boy can do to help – from planting trees to raising money to joining Greenpeace to… whatever.
Show my son he can make a difference. Show him the power of one and how it then multiplies and creates a movement.
I KNOW there are others like him…others that are devastated to see pollution take over what he calls ‘those mountains that are so so beautiful I can’t even see them’ and ‘all those trees that they keep cutting down instead of letting grow big and tall…it makes me so mad Mom I just want to hit my pillow.’
Show him. Show him instead of hitting his pillow he can DO SOMETHING and it WILL MATTER.
Help me show him – leave a comment with your ideas. Please.
I know he can do something amazing with his passion and his talent.