Moral Ground brings together the testimony of over eighty visionariestheologians and religious leaders, scientists, elected officials, business leaders, naturalists, activists, and writersto present a diverse and compelling call to honor our individual and collective moral responsibility to our planet. In the face of environmental degradation and global climate change, scientific knowledge alone does not tell us what we ought to do. The missing premise of the argument and much-needed center piece in the debate to date has been the need for ethical values, moral guidance, and principled reasons for doing the right thing for our planet, its animals, its plants, and its people.
Contributors from throughout the world (including North America, Africa, Australia, Asia, and Europe) bring forth a rich variety of heritages and perspectives. Their contributions take many forms, illustrating the rich variety of ways we express our moral beliefs in letters, poems, economic analyses, proclamations, essays, and stories. In the end, their voices affirm why we must move beyond a scientific study and response to embrace an ongoing model of repair and sustainability. These writings demonstrate that scientific analysis and moral conviction can work successfully side-by-side.
This is a book that can speak to anyone, regardless of his or her worldview, and that also includes a section devoted to what next” thinking that helps the reader put the words and ideas into action in their personal lives. Thanks to generous support from numerous landmark organizations, such as the Kendeda Fund and Germeshausen Foundation, the book is just the starting point for a national, and international, discussion that will be carried out in a variety of ways, from online debate to town hall” meetings, from essay competitions for youth to sermons from pulpits in all denominations. The Moral Ground movement” will result in a newly discovered, or rediscovered, commitment on a personal and community level to consensus about our ethical obligation to the future.
Kathleen Dean Moore is Distinguished Professor of Philosophy at Oregon State University. She is the author or editor of many books including Wild Comfort, The Pine Island Paradox, Rachel Carson, Holdfast, Riverwalking, and countless journal and magazine articles. She serves on the board of directors for Orion Society and Island Institute. She lives in Corvallis, Oregon.
Michael P. Nelson is Associate Professor of Environmental Ethics at Lyman Briigs College at Michigan State University. He is author or editor of several books including The Wilderness Debate Rages On and The Great New Wilderness Debate. He lives in Bell Oak, Michigan.