Archive for June, 2009

Another Piece of the Picture

Tuesday, June 30th, 2009

     Yes, nature is comforting and inspiring.  But it is also painful and cruel.  And the suffering of creatures is as necessary to creating the abundant life on earth as is any other aspect of life.

    I thank Earth Connection reader Joan Brundage for sending me the following moving account of a life and death drama she witnessed in Arizona in late May.–April Moore

     “Last weekend was such a nature weekend for me!  On Monday, Alan and I heard some terrified birds screaming and turned the corner in a garden to witness a Gopher snake wending its way up a Palo Verde tree  into a White Winged Dove nest to eat two baby doves.  The mother dove just watched this from further out on the branch.  Birds are naturally terrified of snakes.  It was heart wrenching to see. 

     Afterwards, the mother flew back to the nest, and just stood there, folding and unfolding her wings, as she looked in the empty nest for her babies.  I know she was grieving.  She hung around the nest for quite a while and was still there when Alan and I moved on.  These will probably be her only chicks for the year as White Winged Doves usually only hatch two chicks per year. 

     I know that the snake had to eat too, and this is part of nature’s balancing act.  Still, it’s hard to observe.”

 

 
 

 

 

Wolverine Spotted in Colorado

Friday, June 26th, 2009

     For the first time in 90 years, the presence of a wild wolverine has been documented in Colorado. 

     Last year, researchers from the Wildlife Conservation Society captured several wolverines in the Grand Tetons in Wyoming, fitted them with radio-tracking collars, and then released them.   One of the wolverines traveled south about 500 miles during April and May, and crossed into Colorado.  He successfully navigated many human-made obstacles, including Interstate-80!

     Weighing 20-30 pounds, wolverines are the largest members of the weasel family.  These bear-like animals once roamed throughout the high mountains of Colorado, Wyoming, Montana, Idaho, Utah, and California.  But none had been spotted in Colorado since 1919.  Wolverines had been virtually wiped out of the lower 48 states by 1930, thanks to poisoning efforts by farmers and ranchers and to hunting.

     While the presence of a single male wolverine does not ensure that others will follow and establish a colony in a state where the species once thrived, the entry of one wolverine is indeed a hopeful sign.  Scientists are continuing to monitor the Colorado wolverine and the others who were released along with him months ago in Wyoming.

     Since wolverines have been studied very little, not much is known about them, scientists say.  But they hope to learn more by tracking the animals.  

     Scientists do know that a wolverine roams about as widely as a grizzly bear, as much as 500 square miles for an adult male.  Consequently, the number of wolverines a given area can support is limited.  The animals tend to stay above the timberline, where near-arctic conditions are common. 

     The wolverine in Colorado was the second recent sighting in an area that had been devoid of wolverines for decades.  The first  was in northern California’s Tahoe National Forest.  “The single instances of male wolverines being documented in California in 2008 and now Colorado are encouraging,” says Shawn Sartorius of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.  “But it remains to be seen if females can make similar movements that would be required to establish populations.”

     One thing is clear, biologists say.  The dispersal of young wolverines from one mountain range to another where there are unrelated individuals is essential if a colony is to develop.

     Wolverines are nocturnal animals, spending their days resting in an informal den beneath a boulder or a downed tree.  By night they wander about, eating rodents and carrion.  Occasionally, they may eat a weakened deer or other large prey.  Despite humans’ efforts to rid the west of them years ago, they do not generally attack cattle, and no wolverine has been known to attack a human.–April Moore

  

Mayflies

Wednesday, June 24th, 2009

     Yesterday I had the opportunity to spend several hours on the banks of a lovely creek.  I was learning, with others, a method for assessing stream health.  The number and kind of macroinvertebrates (i.e. bugs and other tiny critters) that live among the rocks at the bottom of a stream, are a good index of how clean or polluted the stream is.  

     These tiny critters, some barely visible with the naked eye, lead quite interesting lives, mostly unknown to us.  One of these beings is the mayfly.  Poet Richard Wilbur describes his sense of wonder as he watches mayflies in action.–April Moore

Mayflies

In somber forest, when the sun was low,
I saw from unseen pools a mist of flies,
     In their quadrillions rise,
And animate a ragged patch of glow,
With sudden glittering –as when a crowd,
     Of stars appear,
Through a brief gap in black and driven cloud,
One arc of their great round-dance showing clear.

It was no muddled swarm I witnessed, for
In entrechats each fluttering insect there
     Rose two steep yards in air,
Then slowly floated down to climb once more,
So that they all composed a manifold
     And figured scene,
And seemed the weavers of some cloth of gold,
Or the fine pistons of some bright machine.

Watching those lifelong dancers of a day
As night closed in, I felt myself alone
     In a life too much my own,
More mortal in my separateness than they–
Unless, I thought, I had been called to be
     Not fly or star
But one whose task is joyfully to see
How fair the fiats of the caller are.

  

A Triumph for Wilderness

Tuesday, June 23rd, 2009

     I am happy to report the dramatic expansion of one of the world’s greatest wilderness treasures!  The Nahanni National Park Reserve in Canada’s Northwest Territories, an ecological treasure of global significance, has been expanded by six times.  It is now more than three times as large as Yellowstone National Park in the U.S.

     Conservationists are celebrating the park’s expansion.  The widened boundaries will protect 12,000 square miles of  habitat for grizzly bears, woodland caribou, and Dall’s sheep.  Included in the new boundaries are Canada’s deepest river canyons, as well as the highest mountains and the largest glaciers in the Northwest Territories.

     Also protected, thanks to the expansion, will be a globally unique concentration of  caves, rock towers, sinkholes, hot springs mounds, and waterfalls twice the height of Niagara Falls.

     The added protection comes none too soon, maintains Dr. John Weaver of the Wildlife Conservation Society Canada.  Weaver and many other conservationists had been worried about imminent industrial developments that would have had a major impact on the region.  Pressure was great to mine the region and to extract oil and gas.  Now such efforts have been stopped.  

     The Nahanni National Park Reserve was the first site to be named a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  Enlargement of the park is “arguably the most important act of environmental protection in a generation, said Canada’s Prime Minister Stephen Harper.–April Moore

  

A Rattlesnake Romance

Friday, June 19th, 2009

     I thank my friend Judy for sending me these amazing pictures.  Please keep scrolling.  I had trouble placing the photos.–April Moore

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The Amazing Lives of Indian Pipes

Wednesday, June 17th, 2009

On recent walks in the woods, I have noticed that the Indian Pipes are out. 

     You know, those otherworldy-looking, colorless candy canes that push right up through the dried leaves on the forest floor.  The little clusters of waxy-looking, almost translucent white beings fascinate me.  I see them only in the forest, and only here and there. 

     Just what are they?  A fungus?  A plant? They certainly don’t resemble mushrooms.  But, with not a trace of green, they don’t look like plants either.  

     So I decided to do a little research.  The Indian Pipe, also called Ghost Flower  or Corpse Plant, is not a fungus.  It is a plant.  Complete with a stem and leaves (little scales toward the top of the stem), the Indian Pipe is topped by a solitary, nodding, bell-shaped flower.  And solid white.  Like other flowers, the flower of the Indian Pipe contains seeds and is pollinated. 

     But unlike almost all plants that get their energy from sunlight, the Indian Pipe is a saprophyte.  It gets its nourishment from dead and decaying organic matter.  In this sense, the Indian Pipe is like a fungus.   

     Of course the truth is more complicated than simply that the Indian Pipe gets its nourishment from dead and decaying organic matter.  The Indian Pipe is actually nourished by a micorrhizal fungus, an underground intermediary that is attached both to the Indian Pipe and to the roots of a tree.  The fungus is a conduit, sending nourishment it receives from the tree on to the  Indian Pipe!

     The Indian Pipe, which grows throughout eastern forests, has been viewed as a healing plant.  Indians used it to treat colds and fevers.  Early settlers used it to treat fainting spells and nervous conditions.

     And there is a Cherokee legend about the Indian Pipe:  Long ago, when selfishness first entered the world, people began quarreling–first with their own families and tribal members, and then with other tribes.  The chiefs of the several tribes met together to try to solve the problem of quarreling.  They smoked a peace pipe together, while continuing to quarrel among themselves for the next seven days and seven nights.  In punishment for smoking the peace pipe before actually making peace, the Great Spirit turned the chiefs into grey flowers and made them grow where relatives and friends had quarreled.

     The Indian Pipe has also inspired poetry.  Below are a couple of verses about this singular plant.–April Moore

Pale, mournful flower, that hidest in shade
Mild dewy damps and murky glade,
With moss and mould,
Why dost thou hand thy ghastly head,
So sad and cold?
- Catharine Esther Beecher,
To the Monotropa, or Ghost Flower

Where the long, slant rays are beaming,
Where the shadows cool lie dreaming,
Pale the Indian pipes are gleaming–
Laugh, O murmuring Spring!
- Sarah Foster Davis, Summer Song

The Kingfisher

Monday, June 15th, 2009

     I thank John C.  for forwarding me this exquisite poem by one of my favorite poets–Mary Oliver.  I think this poem is definitely worth several readings.–April Moore

 

The Kingfisher
 
The kingfisher rises out of the black wave
 
like a blue flower, in his beak
 
he carries a silver leaf. I think this is
 
the prettiest world–so long as you don’t mind
 
a little dying, how could there be a day in your
 
whole life
 
that doesn’t have its splash of happiness?
 
There are more fish than there are leaves
 
on a thousand trees, and anyway the kingfisher
 
wasn’t born to think about it, or anything else.
 
When the wave snaps shut over his blue head, the
 
water
 
remains water–hunger is the only story
 
he has ever heard in his life that he could
 
believe.
 
I don’t say he’s right. Neither
 
do I say he’s wrong. Religiously he swallows the
 
silver leaf
 
with its broken red river, and with a rough and
 
easy cry
 
I couldn’t rouse out of my thoughtful body
 
if my life depended on it, he swings back
 
over the bright sea to do the same thing, to do it
 
(as I long to do something, anything) perfectly.
 
Mary Oliver
  

  

Help Protect Our Oceans

Friday, June 12th, 2009

     Our oceans are imperiled, thanks mostly to human activity, much of which is simply careless.  Fortunately, there are steps all of us can take to help improve the health of our oceans. 

     But first, a brief rundown on the state of the seas from the Nature Conservancy:

     Human activities are taking a “terrible toll” on the world’s oceans and seas.  Vulnerable marine ecosystems, such as corals, and important fisheries are being damaged by over-exploitation, illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing, destructive fishing practices, invasive alien species and marine pollution, especially from land-based sources.

     A rising tide of marine litter is harming oceans and beaches worldwide.  According to the UN Environment Programme and Ocean Conservancy’s first attempt to take stock of the marine litter situation in the 12 major seas around the world, cigarettes and plastic, especially plastic bags and PET bottles, is the most pervasive type of marine litter around the world.

     Some of the litter, like thin-film single-use plastic bags which choke marine life, should be banned or phased-out rapidly everywhere — there is simply zero justification for manufacturing them anymore, anywhere.

     ”This report is a reminder that carelessness and indifference is proving deadly for our oceans and its inhabitants,” says Philippe Cousteau, CEO of EarthEcho International and Ocean Conservancy board member.

     To help improve the health of our oceans, the Nature Conservancy suggests we citizens of the world take the following 10 steps:

  1. Reduce plastic consumption with reusable shopping bags, water bottles and utensils.
  2. Make informed seafood choices. Keep a copy of the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s seafood guide in your wallet or text Blue Ocean’s FishPhone to help you choose sustainable seafood at the grocery store or a restaurant.  (See the following entry on this site:  http://www.theearthconnection.org/blog/2009/02/protecting-marine-life-as-easy-as-cell-phone-texting/)
  3. Dispose of chemicals properly. Never pour chemicals, pharmaceuticals, oil or paint into the drain or toilets. Check with your county’s household hazardous waste program to properly dispose of or recycle chemicals and keep them out of rivers and oceans.
  4. Choose green detergents and household cleaners.
  5. Get the dirt on your beachside retreat. Before you stay in a hotel on the coast, ask staff what happens to their sewage and swimming pool water, and if they source their restaurant fish from sustainable sources.
  6. Find out the source of your food. Buying local, organic food reduces your carbon footprint, supports the local economy and reduces the amount of pesticides and fertilizers that run into rivers and oceans.
  7. Fill your yard with native species. Reducing the amount of grass in your lawn by planting native shrubs and flower beds will provide a better habitat for birds and other wildlife and require less water and fertilizer, which can run off into into rivers and oceans.
  8. Keep your beach visit clean. Stay off fragile sand dunes, take your trash with you and leave plants, birds and wildlife for everyone to enjoy.
  9. Choose alternatives to coral when shopping for jewelry, household decor or accessories for fish tanks.
  10. Celebrate our oceans.

Need Some Inspiration?

Thursday, June 11th, 2009

      If you get discouraged about the likelihood of our being able to effectively address global warming and our other serious environmental problems, then this commencement address by Paul Hawken is for you.  While aimed at young people, it offers inspiration for caring people of any age.  I thank my husband Andy and my friend Leslie for calling the speech to my attention.–April Moore

Commencement Address

University of Portland, May 3rd, 2009

Paul Hawken

When I was invited to give this speech, I was asked if I could give a simple short talk that was “direct, naked, taut, honest, passionate, lean, shivering, startling, and graceful.” Boy, no pressure there.

But let’s begin with the startling part. Hey, Class of 2009: you are going to have to figure out what it means to be a human being on earth at a time when every living system is declining, and the rate of decline is accelerating. Kind of a mind-boggling situation – but not one peer-reviewed paper published in the last thirty years can refute that statement.  

Basically, the earth needs a new operating system, you are the programmers, and we need it within a few decades.

This planet came with a set of operating instructions, but we seem to have misplaced them. Important rules like don’t poison the water, soil, or air, and don’t let the earth get overcrowded, and don’t touch the thermostat have been broken. Buckminster Fuller said that spaceship earth was so ingeniously designed that no one has a clue that we are on one, flying through the universe at a million miles per hour, with no need for seatbelts, lots of room in coach, and really good food – but all that is changing.

There is invisible writing on the back of the diploma you will receive, and in case you didn’t bring lemon juice to decode it, I can tell you what it says: YOU ARE BRILLIANT, AND THE EARTH IS HIRING. The earth couldn’t afford to send any recruiters or limos to your school. It sent you rain, sunsets, ripe cherries, night blooming jasmine, and that unbelievably cute person you are dating. Take the hint. And here’s the deal: Forget that this task of planet-saving is not possible in the time required. Don’t be put off by people who know what is not possible. Do what needs to be done, and check to see if it was impossible only after you are done.

When asked if I am pessimistic or optimistic about the future, my answer is always the same: If you look at the science about what is happening on earth and aren’t pessimistic, you don’t understand data. But if you meet the people who are working to restore this earth and the lives of the poor, and you aren’t optimistic, you haven’t got a pulse. What I see everywhere in the world are ordinary people willing to confront despair, power, and incalculable odds in order to restore some semblance of grace, justice, and beauty to this world. The poet Adrienne Rich wrote, “So much has been destroyed I have cast my lot with those who, age after age, perversely, with no extraordinary power, reconstitute the world.” There could be no better description. Humanity is coalescing. It is reconstituting the world, and the action is taking place in schoolrooms, farms, jungles, villages, campuses, companies, refuge camps, deserts, fisheries, and slums.

You join a multitude of caring people. No one knows how many groups and organizations are working on the most salient issues of our day: climate change, poverty, deforestation, peace, water, hunger, conservation, human rights, and more. This is the largest movement the world has ever seen.

Rather than control, it seeks connection. Rather than dominance, it strives to disperse concentrations of power. Like Mercy Corps, it works behind the scenes and gets the job done. Large as it is, no one knows the true size of this movement. It provides hope, support, and meaning to billions of people in the world. Its clout resides in idea, not in force. It is made up of teachers, children, peasants, businesspeople, rappers, organic farmers, nuns, artists, government workers, fisherfolk, engineers, students, incorrigible writers, weeping Muslims, concerned mothers, poets, doctors without borders, grieving Christians, street musicians, the President of the United States of America, and as the writer David James Duncan would say, the Creator, the One who loves us all in such a huge way.

There is a rabbinical teaching that says if the world is ending and the Messiah arrives, first plant a tree, and then see if the story is true.  Inspiration is not garnered from the litanies of what may befall us; it resides in humanity’s willingness to restore, redress, reform, rebuild, recover, reimagine, and reconsider. “One day you finally knew what you had to do, and began, though the voices around you kept shouting their bad advice,” is Mary Oliver’s description of moving away from the profane toward a deep sense of connectedness to the living world.

Millions of people are working on behalf of strangers, even if the evening news is usually about the death of strangers. This kindness of strangers has religious, even mythic origins, and very specific eighteenth-century roots. Abolitionists were the first people to create a national and global movement to defend the rights of those they did not know. Until that time, no group had filed a grievance except on behalf of itself. The founders of this movement were largely unknown – Granville Clark, Thomas Clarkson, Josiah Wedgwood – and their goal was ridiculous on the face of it: at that time three out of four people in the world were enslaved. Enslaving each other was what human beings had done for ages. And the abolitionist movement was greeted with incredulity. Conservative spokesmen ridiculed the abolitionists as liberals, progressives, do-gooders, meddlers, and activists. They were told they would ruin the economy and drive England into poverty. But for the first time in history a group of people organized themselves to help people they would never know, from whom they would never receive direct or indirect benefit. And today tens of millions of people do this every day. It is called the world of non-profits, civil society, schools, social entrepreneurship, and non-governmental organizations, of companies who place social and environmental justice at the top of their strategic goals. The scope and scale of this effort is unparalleled in history.

The living world is not “out there” somewhere, but in your heart. What do we know about life? In the words of biologist Janine Benyus, life creates the conditions that are conducive to life. I can think of no better motto for a future economy. We have tens of thousands of abandoned homes without people and tens of thousands of abandoned people without homes. We have failed bankers advising failed regulators on how to save failed assets. Think about this: we are the only species on this planet without full employment. Brilliant. We have an economy that tells us that it is cheaper to destroy earth in real time than to renew, restore, and sustain it. You can print money to bail out a bank but you can’t print life to bail out a planet. At present we are stealing the future, selling it in the present, and calling it gross domestic product. We can just as easily have an economy that is based on healing the future instead of stealing it. We can either create assets for the future or take the assets of the future. One is called restoration and the other exploitation. And whenever we exploit the earth we exploit people and cause untold suffering. Working for the earth is not a way to get rich, it is a way to be rich.

The first living cell came into being nearly 40 million centuries ago, and its direct descendants are in all of our bloodstreams. Literally you are breathing molecules this very second that were inhaled by Moses, Mother Teresa, and Bono. We are vastly interconnected. Our fates are inseparable. We are here because the dream of every cell is to become two cells. In each of you are one quadrillion cells, 90 percent of which are not human cells. Your body is a community, and without those other microorganisms you would perish in hours. Each human cell has 400 billion molecules conducting millions of processes between trillions of atoms. The total cellular activity in one human body is staggering: one septillion actions at any one moment, a one with twenty-four zeros after it. In a millisecond, our body has undergone ten times more processes than there are stars in the universe – exactly what Charles Darwin foretold when he said science would discover that each living creature was a “little universe, formed of a host of self-propagating organisms, inconceivably minute and as numerous as the stars of heaven.”

So I have two questions for you all: First, can you feel your body? Stop for a moment. Feel your body. One septillion activities going on simultaneously, and your body does this so well you are free to ignore it, and wonder instead when this speech will end. Second question: who is in charge of your body? Who is managing those molecules? Hopefully not a political party. Life is creating the conditions that are conducive to life inside you, just as in all of nature. What I want you to imagine is that collectively humanity is evincing a 20 deep innate wisdom in coming together to heal the wounds and insults of the past.

Ralph Waldo Emerson once asked what we would do if the stars only came out once every thousand years. No one would sleep that night, of course. The world would become religious overnight. We would be ecstatic, delirious, made rapturous by the glory of God. Instead the stars come out every night, and we watch television.

This extraordinary time when we are globally aware of each other and the multiple dangers that threaten civilization has never happened, not in a thousand years, not in ten thousand years. Each of us is as complex and beautiful as all the stars in the universe. We have done great things and we have gone way off course in terms of honoring creation. You are graduating to the most amazing, challenging, stupefying challenge ever bequested to any generation. The generations before you failed. They didn’t stay up all night. They got distracted and lost sight of the fact that life is a miracle every moment of your existence. Nature beckons you to be on her side. You couldn’t ask for a better boss. The most unrealistic person in the world is the cynic, not the dreamer. Hopefulness only makes sense when it doesn’t make sense to be hopeful. This is your century. Take it and run as if your life depends on it.”

Need Some Inspiration?

Wednesday, June 10th, 2009

     If you get discouraged about the likelihood of our being able to effectively address global warming and our other serious environmental problems, then this commencement address by Paul Hawken is for you.  While aimed at young people, it offers inspiration for caring people of any age.  I thank my husband Andy and my friend Leslie for calling the speech to my attention.–April Moore

Commencement Address

University of Portland, May 3rd, 2009

Paul Hawken

When I was invited to give this speech, I was asked if I could give a simple short talk that was “direct, naked, taut, honest, passionate, lean, shivering, startling, and graceful.” Boy, no pressure there.

But let’s begin with the startling part. Hey, Class of 2009: you are going to have to figure out what it means to be a human being on earth at a time when every living system is declining, and the rate of decline is accelerating. Kind of a mind-boggling situation – but not one peer-reviewed paper published in the last thirty years can refute that statement.  

Basically, the earth needs a new operating system, you are the programmers, and we need it within a few decades.

This planet came with a set of operating instructions, but we seem to have misplaced them. Important rules like don’t poison the water, soil, or air, and don’t let the earth get overcrowded, and don’t touch the thermostat have been broken. Buckminster Fuller said that spaceship earth was so ingeniously designed that no one has a clue that we are on one, flying through the universe at a million miles per hour, with no need for seatbelts, lots of room in coach, and really good food – but all that is changing.

There is invisible writing on the back of the diploma you will receive, and in case you didn’t bring lemon juice to decode it, I can tell you what it says: YOU ARE BRILLIANT, AND THE EARTH IS HIRING. The earth couldn’t afford to send any recruiters or limos to your school. It sent you rain, sunsets, ripe cherries, night blooming jasmine, and that unbelievably cute person you are dating. Take the hint. And here’s the deal: Forget that this task of planet-saving is not possible in the time required. Don’t be put off by people who know what is not possible. Do what needs to be done, and check to see if it was impossible only after you are done.

When asked if I am pessimistic or optimistic about the future, my answer is always the same: If you look at the science about what is happening on earth and aren’t pessimistic, you don’t understand data. But if you meet the people who are working to restore this earth and the lives of the poor, and you aren’t optimistic, you haven’t got a pulse. What I see everywhere in the world are ordinary people willing to confront despair, power, and incalculable odds in order to restore some semblance of grace, justice, and beauty to this world. The poet Adrienne Rich wrote, “So much has been destroyed I have cast my lot with those who, age after age, perversely, with no extraordinary power, reconstitute the world.” There could be no better description. Humanity is coalescing. It is reconstituting the world, and the action is taking place in schoolrooms, farms, jungles, villages, campuses, companies, refuge camps, deserts, fisheries, and slums.

You join a multitude of caring people. No one knows how many groups and organizations are working on the most salient issues of our day: climate change, poverty, deforestation, peace, water, hunger, conservation, human rights, and more. This is the largest movement the world has ever seen.

Rather than control, it seeks connection. Rather than dominance, it strives to disperse concentrations of power. Like Mercy Corps, it works behind the scenes and gets the job done. Large as it is, no one knows the true size of this movement. It provides hope, support, and meaning to billions of people in the world. Its clout resides in idea, not in force. It is made up of teachers, children, peasants, businesspeople, rappers, organic farmers, nuns, artists, government workers, fisherfolk, engineers, students, incorrigible writers, weeping Muslims, concerned mothers, poets, doctors without borders, grieving Christians, street musicians, the President of the United States of America, and as the writer David James Duncan would say, the Creator, the One who loves us all in such a huge way.

There is a rabbinical teaching that says if the world is ending and the Messiah arrives, first plant a tree, and then see if the story is true.  Inspiration is not garnered from the litanies of what may befall us; it resides in humanity’s willingness to restore, redress, reform, rebuild, recover, reimagine, and reconsider. “One day you finally knew what you had to do, and began, though the voices around you kept shouting their bad advice,” is Mary Oliver’s description of moving away from the profane toward a deep sense of connectedness to the living world.

Millions of people are working on behalf of strangers, even if the evening news is usually about the death of strangers. This kindness of strangers has religious, even mythic origins, and very specific eighteenth-century roots. Abolitionists were the first people to create a national and global movement to defend the rights of those they did not know. Until that time, no group had filed a grievance except on behalf of itself. The founders of this move

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