To whom it may concern,
There is a lot going on in this country right now. Some are trying to progress, others are trying to slow down, and some just want to see our nation return to the status quo. Left in the dust of this chaos, is our nation's land, and with that, its history. We lose, according to the Civil War Preservation Trust, "one acre of hallowed ground an hour." Many devoted people have been working for years to stop this destruction of America's history for years, but is it working?
Ever since the dawn of housing developments and shopping malls, another group of people has been fighting for a different goal, rooted in a similar cause. As we all know, America is losing its green, fast. Every time a new house is built, it destroys valuable farmland, or an animal's natural habitat. Without greenspace, farms, and natural forests, America loses its beauty, a chunk of its economy, and its wildlife. Can we let development continue this way, to the point where our nation becomes dominated by man and his creations?
Take yourself back, for a moment, to 1861. Much of America is still farmland, including the South, which depends on its crop production to keep its economy alive. The sky is bluer, the air is cleaner, because the only things producing carbon emissions are factories in the urban centers of the North. Fisherman can still pull cod from the waters of New England, and abundant oysters from the Chesapeake Bay. Florida's everglades still covered 11,000 square miles, and provided a habitat for thousands of species. In the West, much of the land was still unclaimed, and buffalo could still be found on the plains. This is the America that our ancestors knew and loved.
Now, much of the American South has been developed, or will soon be, as cities like Atlanta expand and expand. Developers buy up all of our farm and forest land, just to make a buck. Coincedentally, at the same time, most of the food being consumed in America is either being grown elsewhere, or grown here using unsafe chemicals and poor farming practices. Now, every minute, more carbon emissions are produced by our cars than any single factory in 1861 could do in a year. No longer are there prosperous oyster fisheries in the Chesapeake Bay, for they have been exterminated by overfishing and disease. Now, the Everglades have mostly been drained, and invasive species have been introduced that are quickly killing off the indigenous wildlife. Now, the great plains are no longer grassy and buffalo only roam in our national parks. Nobody in 1861 could imagine what has happened to America.
America's land is its history, and its history is to be found on its land. My proposal is this: a new angle for preservationists and greens. One that says, we want to save this land because the Civil War was not fought in suburbia, and suburbia is not green. There was no smog, only the smoke of battle. There were no paved highways and overpasses, only dirt roads. The Wilderness was actually wilderness, and animals lived in abundance there. If we work together, we can accomplish more. Battlefields can become parks, where urban familes can go to learn about their country's history, and spend time outside in her natural beauty. The Shenandoah's farmland that was marched through by countless soldiers can be returned to its age-old purpose.
As Mohandas Ghandi once said, "There is sufficiency in the world for man's need, but not for man's greed." That is my message to America. Try working together, and simplifying your lives for a cleaner, greener, and better educated America.