Saturday, June 19, 2010
Day 170: Only Eight Percent...
A walk with Angel today. Kylie and a friend out walking the dog...
"Sandra Hofferth, a professor of family studies at the University of Maryland, tracked "a long decline in time spent outdoors from 1981 through the present," she noted. About 21 percent of children ages 9 to 12 spent time in outdoor activities, such as hiking, camping or going to the beach, in 1981, compared to 16 percent in 1997. That percentage dropped again by half — to 8 percent — in 2003."
This is from the a Seattle newspaper. In addition (and quite discouraging) Hofferth monitored the outdoor habits of 12 year olds. Turns out they spend, on average, four hours and ten minutes a week outside!
I posted the quote above on Facebook. Robb Kloss (who writes a great blog from New Zealand) wrote:
"Very sad Allan, another solid indicator of our continued and growing disconnection from nature and wilderness. If our children, and the adults whom should be showing them, do not see, appreciate, taste, and feel the earth, how can we expect to save it from oil companies, mining interests, and developers when it is just an abstract thought?
Get those kids outside!"
To which I replied:
"Oh so true Robb.
I think Obama's lackluster response to the oil spill can be traced to his (and his cabinet's) lack of connection to nature and wilderness. Never trust a politician, supreme court justice, congressman or senator that doesn't strap on a backpack and head out into the wilds for a week at least once a year. Let Muir, Leopold, Krutch and Abbey be their guides.
Forget political parties. How much time do they spend outside? (and I'm not talking about woodcutting photo ops that "W" used to do or hunting--sometimes fellow hunters---on private "game" ranches like Cheney)."