J500 Media and the Environment

A Tenacious Trend by amandat09
February 6, 2009, 4:16 pm
Filed under: Food + Health, Society + Media

I don’t like to think of our current environmental movement as a trend. You could call some specific aspects of it trendy, like the reusable bags, but this has to be more than just a normal trend. Many people say the modern environmental movement started with Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring. If you considered that a new general American environmental awareness started 1962, I’d go ahead and say that this is one long trend, far outliving scrunchies and leg warmers. And that trend led to the banning of DDT in the US. Personally, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with the popularity of the green movement. If we’re really looking to get something accomplished, we can’t judge some people in the population for not being “green” enough. We can’t expect everyone in the world to be as environmentally conscious as most of us in this class probably are, but as long as they’re using reusable bags or water bottles and as long as they know the different between organic and not, that has to be a step in the right direction, right? This trend, if you can call it that, isn’t a fashion trend or a hairstyle. It’s a lifestyle, and if enough people jump on board, I don’t think there’s any going back.


It’s like those Livestrong bands that came out a few years ago. They  became so popular in my high school that some kinds wore them and had no idea what they were for. I know this isn’t ideal, and I definitely thought it made them look stupid. But that said, they still bought them and wore them and were, whether they knew it or not, donating to something good. If we can find ways to do it, I don’t see the problem in making something good something that’s popular, as well.

People who want to delve deeper into environmental issues will, but some will only see what’s at the surface. And as ignorant as some may be, there’s always strength in numbers.

Tangent aside, after reading Michael Pollan’s Power Steer article, if anyone wants to know more about the industrialized meat production you should read Slaughterhouse Blues. It’s written by KU anthropology professor Don Stull, and will tell you more about the industry than you care to know.



4 Comments so far
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I’ve been taking a class this week on conservation education and we spent one session discussion trends. One thing that I was guilty of before this class was associating the term ‘trend’ as a negative. What we think of as trends are actually fads. Trends like reusable bags will hopefully stick, especially with some establishments instituting strictly b.y.o.-bag policies. Fads stick around for a short while but trends help innovations move forward.

Comment by meganr21

The worry is that people think that the huge chaos we, as humans, are causing in the environment can be stopped by using reusable bags and carrying water bottles. Every little bit helps, but there are system changes that the general consumers may not think to address. Every bag helps, but we need to step back and rework things from square one.

Also, this talk of trends makes me think of the election. I think a lot of people voted because they thought it was cool to do so. Still, I would assert that it was a positive trend in that Barack Obama got elected. Now that the seed is planted, I hope people will start to care about voting for more than it’s coolness factor.

Comment by brennad87

Yeah, I like your distinction between trends and fads. But whatever it’s called, I hope it sticks!

Comment by amandat09

I agree– the normalcy of growing your own food in Europe is wonderful. I just love that people just live like that. It is so wonderful and so tasty! Did people have gardens in Germany? What is the eating culture there like?

Amanda– I would love to talk about your impressions of Angers!! You know that Justin went there as well– isn’t that odd that at least three people in our class have lived in/visited the city?

Comment by brennad87

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