Politics aside, Earth Day is a tribute to the vision of founder Sen. Gaylord Nelson

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   Were it not for the big money being spent by the fossil fuel industries and the political advantage still imagined by climate change-denying Republicans there would be little to be discouraged by on this edition of Earth Day.

   Science continues to teach us more and more about how we can protect our universe, conservation advocates and environmental activists are making gains in how most citizens think and act, and young people have embraced the movement including thinking deeply about what they buy and what they eat. There are so many ways Earth Day is indeed what legendary founder, Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson envisioned some 45 years ago.

   Of course the political nonsense is still frustrating and, at the federal level especially, dangerous. But the contrasts have become so stark that most thinking people appreciate both the need and the urgency and they are acting. That’s the beauty and the value of Earth Day, and a reason to be optimistic as we push forward.