nature is our mother自然是我们的母亲
by tan ying(谭英 湖南大学)
let me begin my speech with a replay of scenes familiar to most, if not all, of those present here today.
"mum, i'm sorry, but i need 3,000 yuan for my tuition this year."
"mum, it is my friend's birthday tomorrow, i must buy her a present."
"mum, this jacket was out of fashion long ago, would you do me a favor? "
take. take. take. the relationship between a mother and a child always seems to follow such a pattern. i know my mother is always there for me, providing me with everything i need; from food to clothing, from tuition to pocket money. i never thought twice about all she did until one day she said, "will there be a time that you'll say you have taken enough from me? "
like a child endlessly asking, we humans, throughout history, have been continually demanding what we desire from nature. we enjoy the comfort and beauty of our furniture, yet we never bother to think about the serious soil erosion caused by deforestation. we take it for granted that we must warm ourselves in winter times, yet we seldom realize the burning away of precious natural resources. we appreciate all the prosperity from the development of modern industry, yet few would give the slightest consideration to the global air and water pollution caused by industrial wastes. our ruthless exploitation has permanently impaired our mother earth. as we tragically learned from last summer's floods. we cannot continue our carelessness.就像孩子无止境的要求一样，我们人类，从古到今，也一直在向自然索求以满足欲望。我们享受家具的美丽与舒适，但我们从来就不愿去想一想由于采伐树林而引起的严重的土壤侵蚀问题。我们认为冬天要取暖是理所当然的事情，却未曾意识到宝贵的自然资源就这样被烧掉。我们高兴地看到现代工业发展带来了繁荣，但很少人会对由于工业废物导致的全球空气和水质污染问题稍加考虑。我们无情的剥削已经永远地伤害了地球母亲。我们从去年夏天的洪灾悲剧中已经认识到，我们不能再继续漠不关心下去了。
finally, standing here at the threshold of the 21st century, we cannot help thinking of our posterity. nature is not only the mother of the present generation, but also the mother of the generations to come. how severely our descendents will criticize us if we leave them a barren and lifeless mother? how much more they will appreciate us if we give them a world of harmony to inherit? let us start respecting and caring for nature from now on. let us start the campaign of creating a mutually beneficial relationship between people and nature right from this moment. with this new start, i firmly believe, that our children, and our children's children will live in a brand new age of green trees, clean air, crystal water, blue sky and an even more promising world!