—Rabbi Sandy Bogin
Sarah Neuman, The New Jewish Home – Westchester

April 22, 2020
50th Anniversary of Earth Day

I invite you all, if you can, to pause a minute from what you are doing.

Take a moment and look around at the people you are with. Remember we are all on the same team. We are all in this together.

Today is Earth Day. It is the 50th anniversary of the first Earth Day, begun as a result of a terrible oil spill in Santa Barbara, where I went to college. I was there for that first Earth Day in 1970!

We are in the midst of an awful and scary pandemic. It is hard to think that anything good could come from this—yet because people are quarantined all over the world: penguins are roaming the streets of South Africa, kangaroos are freely hopping on the streets of Australia, large numbers of endangered sea turtles have gathered in the waters of Thailand and bears are reclaiming trees in Yosemite Park. And since so many fewer people are driving—as we see every day when we come here to work–in some parts of the United States, there has been a 30% drop in air pollution.

So during this frightening time, we note the irony of the positive effects that this awful global quarantine is having on our planet. And we must always remember that this awful, scary time WILL pass.

Take good care, everyone. May God bless you all.