Maven Moment: Sustainability Lessons From WWII

Maven Moment: Sustainability Lessons From WWII

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The Fourth of July is true across the nook, and this vacation places me in thoughts of Grandma Jennie. She was very patriotic. Many of the individuals in her era had been. They pulled collectively for the warfare effort in World War II by utilizing ration books, saving objects like tin cans to offer steel for the army, and rising “victory gardens.”

She was so happy with her brothers who served within the warfare and her sons who each joined the service. She treasured the letters that she acquired “from abroad,” and I keep in mind her singing songs like “Over There” and “God Bless America” when she labored round the home.

So, to her, the Made in America label actually meant one thing. And it means one thing to me. Purchasing locally produced items saves the gasoline used to ship objects lengthy distances, and it supplies native employment. Our communities and nation develop collectively once we give attention to native options.

We can be taught different classes from the WWII period as nicely. We can keep away from being wasteful and deal with sources as in the event that they had been scarce or rationed. If we don’t begin to act this fashion, we could discover that nature places us on very uncomfortable rations.

My mother-in-law instructed me that her aunts would sew rips of their stockings as a result of nylon was so scarce that they couldn’t simply purchase a brand new pair if one acquired ripped. If one stocking couldn’t be repaired, they’d steep its mate with their different stockings in cool tea to get all of them the identical coloration. There was no tossing a torn garment with out first making an attempt to repair or reuse it.

We can scale back our consumption of sources like they did, we will recycle, and we will grow a victory garden, too!

WWII Victory Garden poster
WWII victory backyard poster. Source: Wikimedia Commons

My mother’s good friend, Hannah, recalled when American households had been issued ration books. The rationing included meals like sugar, butter, espresso, and meat. It additionally included items like tires, sneakers, gasoline, and bicycles.

I’m wondering, what would I do if meals like meat or milk was rationed prefer it was then? I’d wish to suppose that I’d give my milk ration stamps to a mom for her youngsters. And I’d eat extra meat-free meals. How would you modify your life if merchandise we take without any consideration had been rationed?

I really feel very privileged to have recognized individuals from the WWII period, like my grandmother and Hannah, who willingly made sacrifices for a standard aim. I feel that they’ve a lot to show us. By pulling collectively — like they did then — and doing our half to purchase domestically produced items, scale back our consumption, reuse what we have now, and recycle what’s not usable, we will have a big effect on the world round us.

Feature picture: Marjory Collins [Public domain], Wikimedia Commons. This article was initially printed in June 2019.