Chief Seattle\'s \'Environmental Statement\'


In his “Environmental Statement”, Chief Seattle describes the vastly different way his people see nature from the way that the white men see it. He warns that the white men attempting to buy the land his people live on do not know the importance of what they ask for. He explains that God, the land, the water, the plants, the animals, and man are a close-knit family with a relationship requiring more respect and reverence than the white men give. The white men’s offer of purchase is considered, but only after Seattle drops a few warnings and suggestions. He suggests that the white men treat the land and water as they would a close relative. He warns them not to take the land for granted lest they leave it unusable. He begs them to appreciate the clean air and the life it supports. He encourages them to love Mother Nature as much as his people do. He tells them not to treat the earth as if they own it, for the opposite is true. Moreover, he states, they can’t go on living as if they own God. The result of such actions, he fears, will be the end of being a part of nature and it’s wonders and the beginning of merely being.

Category: English