Appparently For Us, It Is Easy Being Green

January 11, 2011
Category: Politics

A new poll found that "55% of all LGBT adults, when asked if they 'personally care a great deal about the current state and future of the environment,' say this statement describes themselves completely or very well - a description that characterizes just one-third (33%) of heterosexual American adult."

I guess it makes sense that gays and lesbians are more likely to go green than our hetero counterparts. We do tend to be early adopters when it comes to social causes and technologies. But "being green" seems to more of a trend/label than an actual practice these days, and that kind of scares me.

Do you find yourselves trying to do the right thing by the environment or do you get tired of it's recent exploitation?

P.S. For those of you wondering about sexy scuba man, he's Phillipe Coustea, Jr., grandson of Jacques-Yves Cousteau and son of Phillipe Cousteau. He's been continuing his family's work of educating the public about environmental and conservation issues and looking good while doing it.

Tags: green, environment, polls
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Post written by RobHeartsDH (View Author Profile)
About this author: Rob lives in Manhattan with his black pug Riley. When he’s not thinking about daddies, he enjoys writing, eating burritos, watching copious amounts of television, and thinking about his next meal.
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The toughest thing about being faithful about the recycling and so forth is realizing that the rest of the developing world is heading toward environmental pollution where a single country can do nothing to stop all the smokestacks going up all over china, asia and soon to be all over other developing areas with not very many environmental controls whatsoever because they keep cost of labor and manufacturing down that way. Lifestyles in the U.S. will at some point diminish to match the rest of the world's ability to have cheap labor because of not as many issues about needing privacy, toys and lots of square footage like in the U.S. presently. I doubt the rest of the world will go green just because I wave a sign around in the intersection.

Our example can be followed. I have been going to Thailand for 20+ years annually and have noted many positive changes toward environmental habits over the years. Recycling is beginning to catch on as well as organic farming and sustainable fishing. It lags behind the U.S. but young people there are beginning to learn to do things differently. Will it be enough and soon enough? Who knows? But, at least it's a start.

Unfortunately, I have to agree with ShyPup. Yet, as one who tries to be positive about all things, I insist on trying to do what I can to help the overall situation. I've lived as green a lifestyle as possible for many years now, and I do believe every little bit helps. To really go green takes some hard choices and a lot of study into the trade-offs of one act against another. Recycle, reuse, refuse is my motto.
One major plus I've discovered is that a green lifestyle enables me to live a very good and happy life on a fraction of the money I used to spend. I'd say that's makes it worthwhile in every respect.

My old college roommate and I were just talking about how recycling and composting garbage something we struggled to do in the 80's was now mandatory. The world may not be in step with us but since the US is the still the biggest per person consumer of resources on the planet, I can only be releived that our City has finally caught on.
And Cheers for Phillip yum

I think that one reason for the relatively higher percentage among gays is that they tend to be more prosperous on average with more disposable income than among heterosexuals (this is a fact proven by studies) and therefore more open to the higher costs involved in "going green." Most of my straight friends with families have other worries and more financial concerns that do not allow them in some cases, the "luxury" of indulging the latest green fads.

By the way, can I mention one thing about this constant use of LGBT that irritates the hell out of me: why are bisexuals put into the "coalition" represented by LGBT? That is a blatant attempt to inflate the constituency, it appears to me. Bisexuals are not a group and certainly not a victim group. By their very definition, they meld into the general society and are not identifiable. They are not harassed or "persecuted" and certainly have not gathered themselves into pressure groups to claim their "rights." They have not voted to be part of any LGBT grouping. Transsexuals are a whole different issue left to another time. How about we change it to LG or LGT?

Well, now that the subject of the "LGBT" acronym composed a major part of RogueDad's reply, I have a curiousity. I recall when the acronym was "GLBT". I'm interested in how it became "LG". I have a feeling that gay men are outnumbered by the lesbian community, but just curious as to how we defaulted to "GLBT".
Back to the point... I think a balanced green lifestyle is certainly commendable. But adopting it is not an easy process, especially when many do not.

Check out the Union of Concerned Scientists ucsusa.org for tips on what matters and what doesn't green-wise. The biggest contributions are
(1) having children, especially in an affluent society.
Earth's population is double what it was when I was born in 1949.
(2) size of house
(3) size of car and miles driven
(4) plane miles flown.

Stuff like paper or plastic (reusable bags are best) is small change.

There are things one can do to reduce, and many gay men are off the hook on (1) or choose to adopt. I travel internationally for pleasure, so try to offset that with investments in wind & solar energy and the like.

Okay so I'm gonna weigh in with a comment sure to freak a lot of people out.
We can recycle all we want, carry grocery bags, put in energy efficient bulbs, compost and all the rest and its only a START. The biggest and most important thing we need to be doing is consuming less from the start. MUCH less. Sure its true that half the planet through the nations of China and India are jumping on the consumption bandwagon, but we can make a change here if we are willing to do the tough thing, which is give up on having 30 pairs of shoes, 20 pairs of jeans and start thinking first before whipping out the old credit card to get the next cool thing that we're only going to get bored with in short order.

Am I some zen-like guy with only a tatami mat and a futon? Nope. I'm just as guilty of the over consuming thing as we all are, but I'm trying to make a real substantive change in my life patterns. So I have significantly narrowed my wardrobe, taken steps to assure myself that when I do shop its something of quality that will last a good long time.

We can DO this, but it takes us all committing to it to get it done.

Pulling back on overly-indulgent purchases is likely the most rational approach to helping our planet. Unfortunately, our culture tells us to do the opposite....so do our governments who encourage spending to keep economies going. There's no doubt that materialism and self-importance are two of the main culprits of mass-production and abundant, stinky landfills.

I've been discovering that many gay men with big salaries tend to not be very "green"-thinking. When one has the money, one tends to treat themselves extravagantly and much of the environmentally-friendly suggestions are just a nuisance when you can afford a high electricity bill and gas-guzzling vehicles. When you can afford luxury, you take luxury.

I found it quite interesting and somewhat confirming with the findings that during the darkest days of the recent recession, crap going into landfills had remarkably decreased. It's such a paradox for our world.

Artwit, people aren't the problem. The highly industrialized and wealthy countries with their dense populations are the cleanest on the planet these days. An anti-natalist policy will not be the cure but the death of our societies. (Any economist of merit will tell you that human capital is the most important ingredient.) There is a huge demographic crisis descending on us because of this attitude. Japan and much of Europe are at or near the point of no return, where their societies will fall into a demographic winter with enormous financial and social consequences. The Union of Concerned Scientists sounds like it's been influenced by the likes of Paul Ehrlich. He was proven wrong some time ago with his alarmist predictions. I distrust this anti-natalist philosophy because it is usually composed of people with the attitude: just enough of me, way too much of you. The world's population has doubled in the time period you mentioned chiefly due to longer life spans thanks to improvements in health care and sanitation. The actual birth rates have plummeted.

Things naturally change so much that any societies that lived a million years ago are unknown. Things will change over the coming centuries till various societies have come and gone. Have to accept reality that we can't conquer nature and that the earth has a way of taking it all back which is what volcanoes and tsunami's are all about in the purely natural world. Nature doing it's thing to take the planet back is just a process that is not ultimately under human control. We maintain cities constantly in order to prevent rust and corrosion in the infrastructure. Going green does sell a lot of product so it does create a fresh new market. If perpetual motion were possible then we could rotate on this axis indefinitely but the power to rotate without end is just not possible for any planet. Its still good to have a sense of good will as long as it's not another phase of salesmanship where the green salesman or health food guy in the white coat sometimes is a new version of the used car guy.

To me, reducing consumption is as important as recycling what we use. Two small ways that I have found to reduce consumption are: 1) care for what I buy 2) repair it when it breaks or make it better so it won’t break. Examples: I take care of my shoes – I have 3 pair. The ones I use in the winter, I treat with a protective coating so they will not dry out causing the leather to crack. If a sole comes loose, I use contact cement to put it back on.

I buy hummingbird feeders made in China because they are easier to clean than the plastic ones I’ve bought before. A problem with the Chinese ones is that the nectar reservoir is made of metal which will begin to rust the first year and become unusable after two seasons. I take them apart when I get them and paint them with a rust resistant paint which extends their life indefinitely as long as they are inspected and cared for yearly.

Although totally inappropriate for the moment when 49 of 50 states have snow on the ground, I might add that the nectar that hummingbirds like can be made at home rather than purchasing the ingredients at a store. Simply use a proportion of 4:1 sugar to water - 4 C sugar dissolved in 1 gallon of hot water – then refrigerate. No need for red coloring – no need to make a trip to the store. Additionally, making use of the internet, it’s easy to find out how to make many of the cleaners we buy at home with ingredients we already have. Why not?

When I buy products, in addition to the price, I pay attention to the packaging. Often, packages can be reused for other purposes. A plastic lidded kitty litter container is ideal for storing sand or salt alongside a walkway or driveway for easy access when needed. Some deli meats are sold in plastic containers that simply have to washed to be reused as containers for leftovers.

Last, it is easy to put on a sweater to keep warm rather than use more energy cranking up the thermostat.

These are a few of the simple solutions I use to address a complex problem.

Its been my personal observation that not one bloody soul (this includes the hypocritical Costeau family) has.. or is putting out any real effective effort to keep the planet "green". Most everyone I know still drives cars excessively. Uses all sorts of electricity..plastics etcera

Right now, recycling is pure bullshit. its not helping us be "green" one bit. All we are doing is little efforts that make everyone feel good, pat ourselves on the backs for separating our trash.. while being pure hypocrites. We still drive everywhere, we still buy products that have no real effective measures of diminishing the pollution content into the earth.

Unless you own at least 10 fertile acres and of which, is totally sustaining your every need, you are doing diddly and squat to "save the earth"

Look...you are saying not one of us is doing anything worthwhile? Your comments are useless unless you continue on and tell us what needs to be done and what YOU are doing to make a difference.

People do feel good when certain terminology and buzz words are used even as the ultimate recycling is where the earth always takes itself back from one civilization or another over time. Buzz words create sales with the word "green" just as the word "digital" was awesome one time, then words like hi def, 3D, ergonomic, progressive, earth friendly, green, biodegradable, the smart choice, etc then we end up with millions of cell phones and kewl gadgets piling up in land fills and getting dumped in the sea sometimes just to have 3 month old obsolete cell phones washing up on the beaches and people anxious to stampede the stores to get the new models every few weeks right while using biodegradable grocery bags for plastic packaging that contains organic strawberries. Societies coming and going is a good thing so that no single dominant influence can ever rule too much for too long and that's a good thing toward diversity and natures need to start over occasionally and see what pops up next. Theirs no absolute need for any present day system to go on forever.

I think that's just one of Al Gores things to make more money!!With the 'squirly' light bulbs etc...We don't need it right now!! The USA is going thru a recession and we don't need to be concerned w/that!!!

In a way we gays, as non-breeders, are doing more for the planet just by being us. My pessimistic side says that the environmental battle has been fought, and lost. When Paul Erhlich warned of the "Population Bomb" everyone envisioned an Hiroshima-like cataclysm. What we have instead is a pervasive ecological implosion that is being caused rising worldwide standards of living combined with gargantuan metastatic population growth. Instead of haselling gays, the world's governments should consider banning heterosexual sex.

I was concerned with ecological matters from my 14th, even before being gay. So it is 'in my blood' not to waste stuff. And I feel pretty well with my lifestyle. by the way, I am also a vegetarian.

In my youth, if someone says that he has days off it was usual to as "Do you go somewhere or stay at home?".
Later it was "Where do you go?. Nowadays I hear mostly the question "Where do you fly?"
Think about it.

You don't have to be *upper-middle class* to sort your trash in to the different recycle groups. You don't have to be rich to wash that glass jelly jar and use it for a drink glass. You can pass up the offer to buy this month's collector cups at McDonalds which celebrate some new movie which hasn't even started playing at the theater.
Both poor folks and rich folks can go shopping at the local Goodwill Store.

It is the little things you do everyday which make a difference because you do them everyday.

You fly to this month's hot gay vacation location maybe twice a year. If you flew to some gay orgy every weekend then you would have some major *carbon footprint* use to undo.

I'm split down the middle when it comes to green. I have seen the climate changed since my younger years.

My apartment offers no recycling services and our city just got recycling last year. There are not dropoff depots, i don't drive and I can't justify washing out cans and hauling garbage to a depot far away.

If I conserve energy, my neighbor down the street uses 10 times more because he or she doesn't care. It doesn't really cancel things out.

When all scientists get together and have a consensus that climate change is real, I say we need to do something.

Same thing as earth hour, there are those who shut off all lights and freeze in the dark while someone else is running around being defiant and trying to find ways to use more power.

What really bugs me are companies who greenwash because they are trying to lie to the consumer all for the sake of profit and some people eat it up like a starving dog and believe what they are being told.