The color green has a wide spectrum for many people in terms of both reason and in terms of duty. Some people might decide to recycle, while others will limit toilet flushes, decrease showers, eat solely organic vegetarian food, wear hemp, and ride their bikes five miles to work each day. The reasons people go green can be just as diverse as the actions people take in moving toward a green direction. Some believe we need to reduce the impact of global warming, others believe overt consumerism contributes to third world poverty, while others go green because it simply saves or makes them money.
Whatever your reason for deciding to go green, whether you go all the way or not, you will more than likely find some opposition to your lifestyle change. For example, one Internet writer who writes under the name Vanity Goddess wrote a piece boldly titled,”If You’re ‘Going Green,’ You May Also Be ‘Going to Hell.'” She asserts, “The “green” people are very focused on global warming, and think that if we changed the way we lived, we can somehow save this earth. I don’t know, I just think it’s kind of stupid. I don’t think human beings control the temperature of the earth-I think God does that.”
Sean Hannity, a conservative political talk show host on Fox News said that when the grocery store cashier asks him “paper or plastic, I say double plastic just to annoy liberals.”
Opposition to a greener lifestyle comes with a myriad of objections regardless of your reason for aiming for such a lifestyle. Here are some simple tips to overcome some of the unwanted adversity of being green.
1. Don’t boast about your decision. While it may be in your heart to glorify the benefits of going green, you don’t have to explain all the things you do to “be green.” Just be green.
2. If someone asks you why you bother with all that green garbage, respond with something that is true, though not necessarily debatable. For example, “I make a little extra cash from recycling,” or, “I’ve found that I saved over $100 last year by replacing just a few of my light bulbs with CFL’s.” You can also simply say, “I just want to save money.”
3. Be lenient with guests. If you have a party and people completely neglect your recycling bins, don’t make a big deal over it. Ask them to put stuff in the right containers, but if someone gives you a big objection about it, let it go. If you are super concerned, go ahead and filter the trash the next day.
4. When confronted with the global warming controversy, explain some of the other reasons going green can benefit the Earth and humanity, but without those hippy, tree-hugging words such as Earth and humanity. For example, explain how many landfills there are and why you just don’t want them creeping into your neighborhood. Explain that you’re less concerned about Global Warming then you are about dependence on foreign oil. You want to get more jobs here in the United States! Explain the impact of usurping natural resources from impoverished nations. In short, deflect the focus from global warming to a more narrow focus.