Tag Archives: Speeches

Amusing Monday: Quotes to make you think

This week I’d like to share 20 quotes about humans and their relationship to the environment. Some of these quotes are odd; some are witty; and some border on the profound. But I like them because they cause me to think.

Thanks goes to the Quote Garden for compiling a huge list of “environmental quotes” from which these were taken.

1. “The command ‘Be fruitful and multiply’ was promulgated, according to our authorities, when the population of the world consisted of two people.” — William Ralph Inge, More Lay Thoughts of a Dean, 1931

2. “Time and space – time to be alone, space to move about – these may well become the great scarcities of tomorrow.” — Edwin Way Teale, Autumn Across America, 1956

3. “Because we don’t think about future generations, they will never forget us.” — Henrik Tikkanen

4. “The rose has thorns only for those who would gather it.” — Chinese Proverb

5. “For the first time in the history of the world, every human being is now subjected to contact with dangerous chemicals, from the moment of conception until death.” — Rachel Carson, Silent Spring, 1962

6. “Give a man a fish, and he can eat for a day. But teach a man how to fish, and he’ll be dead of mercury poisoning inside of three years.” — Charles Haas

7. I conceive that the land belongs to a vast family of which many are dead, few are living, and countless numbers are still unborn.” — Author Unknown

8. “We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children.” — Native American Proverb

9. “The struggle to save the global environment is in one way much more difficult than the struggle to vanquish Hitler, for this time the war is with ourselves. We are the enemy, just as we have only ourselves as allies.” — Al Gore

10. “Till now man has been up against Nature; from now on he will be up against his own nature.” — Dennis Gabor, Inventing the Future, 1964

11. “We never know the worth of water till the well is dry.” — Thomas Fuller, Gnomologia, 1732

12. “Man is a complex being: He makes deserts bloom – and lakes die.” — Gil Stern

13. “Suburbia is where the developer bulldozes out the trees, then names the streets after them.” — Bill Vaughn

14. “The activist is not the man who says the river is dirty. The activist is the man who cleans up the river.” — Ross Perot

15. “Economic advance is not the same thing as human progress.” — John Clapham, A Concise Economic History of Britain, 1957

16. “We say we love flowers, yet we pluck them. We say we love trees, yet we cut them down. And people still wonder why some are afraid when told they are loved.” — Author Unknown

17. “Why do people give each other flowers? To celebrate various important occasions, they’re killing living creatures? Why restrict it to plants? ‘Sweetheart, let’s make up. Have this deceased squirrel.'” — The Washington Post

18. Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connect. — Chief Seattle, 1855

19. “When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world.” — John Muir

20. “We could have saved the Earth but we were too damned cheap.” — Kurt Vonnegut Jr.