Save the world.
These three ambiguous words have slipped off the tongues of well-meaning parents and empathetic teachers for decades, designed to empower and thrust youth into action. To us, the children of the 80s and 90s, this seemed like a challenge -- a charge to change the world placed firmly on our shoulders.
Our elementary school classrooms were plastered with posters urging us to save the whales, the forests, and the bald eagles. "Reduce, reuse, recycle" was more than just a slogan; it was a mantra. And even before we knew what the ozone layer was, we knew that we had to save it.
This is a good thing, right? Maybe not, argues Courtney E. Martin, the author of Do It Anyway: The New Generation of Activists.