Nature and the Election

As an Independent, I am a social liberal and a fiscal conservative. But, as an environmentalist, I usually support the Democrats and, in this election, there's too much at stake not to do so once again.

Of course, both political parties claim to be concerned about the environment but, in my experience, their reasons and solutions differ dramatically. Conservative Republicans view conservation in the context of outdoor recreation. Favoring industry, development and personal freedom over the protection of natural ecosystems, they often minimize the impact of human culture on the environment. They favor access over wilderness, new roads over mass transit and exploitation over conservation. To them, concerns about global warming, endangered species and habitat destruction reflect the bias of a liberal media. Governed by capitalist principles and a religious mindset, they view the natural world as God's gift to man, his chosen species and the pinnacle of his creation.

After eight years of enduring the Bush Administration, nature and the civilized world are in desperate need of a change. Let's hope the majority agree.