I started thinking about this talk because of Earth Day. I'm sure most of you know that Earth Day started in 1970. And at that time, the ecological problems we had were much the same as we have today: dirty air, dirty water, abuse of resources. But on the other hand, the challenges we are facing now are greater than ever before. Our oil supplies have become increasingly uncertain in the face of growing global demand, and there's more and more buildup of chemicals in dumps—and therefore in our bodies. You would think that the simple idea of taking care of the planet would be resounding and resonating throughout the world more than ever, but instead, we party.

When I watched the news recently, I saw all kinds of different groups having parties for Earth Day—they were planting trees, things like that. But nobody was pointing to the problems. And if you look closely and examine the websites that are out there, you begin to realize that they've all been co-opted and politicized. One website listed all the "myths" about the environment. The first one is: there's no global warming. According to this group, there is sound, scientific evidence that there's no global warming. And it's very convincing. The programs that they have for children—all the way from primary school to high school students—give the sense that there's nothing to worry about. Then there's the Kyoto Accord. Just about every other country on the face of the earth is involved in the Kyoto Accord, except us. But nobody's yelling about that. We should be screaming about it. There should be a march on Washington about it.

Global warming is going to cause some serious problems at all levels of our society. Yet our lawmakers are busy figuring out how to give the polluters breaks—let them emit their toxins, they say. Fine them a modest fine, and they can keep on doing whatever they want. We go on as if nothing was happening, as if we had all the time in the world to take care of this crisis. And yet, regardless of what we do to this great earth of ours, it is in fact going to continue. It may reach a point at which it will no longer be habitable for humans, but the earth itself will be here. In fact, it may be that that will be the earth's reaction to how we're treating it—it will get rid of the disease and restore its equilibrium.