This is becoming an increasingly common media and activist ploy - ascribing human attributes to inanimate objects or non-human life forms in order to garner public sympathy and increase activist support. I assume the theory is that if we can identify with something in human terms, then we will be more inclined to accept the message.
And so we to try to "Save the planet" instead of trying to save the people on the planet. Instead of trying to be good stewards of the earth so that we can continue to sustain ourselves here, the focus is on getting rid of the human filth that degrades the earth. Barbara Kay alluded to this mindset in a recent column, Hug the Earth, kill the humans:
...Watson is the symbol of a movement that originated in a desire to improve the planet's physical condition, but transmogrified into the zero-sum dogma of eco-spirituality, in which the object of worship is the environment, and the messianic goal its return to a pre-civilization Edenic state. In this scenario, Earth is perennial victim, mankind eternal villain, the consumption of natural resources original sin. No emotionally manipulative appeal is beyond the pale for this pagan religion's demagogues, even the shameful appropriation of racist tropes. Alpha eco-spiritualist novelist Alice Walker claims, "the Earth is the nigger of the world..."
In today's Sun, Michael Coren also sees this as a worrisome trend:
... Here lies the point. Life matters much, much more than the planet, which is merely a place on which humans live. We need to care for Earth not because of it, but because of us. Pure self-interest. If humanity did not exist, to hell with the planet. It's a means to an end. We're the end; Earth the means.
Problem is, fashionable thinking has reversed the equation. The planet is to be saved because it is precious in itself and we, dangerous intruders, are the problem. Earth is to be revered, loved and even worshipped. Like some perverse replacement theology, Mother Earth takes on the role of real mothers and fathers....
And even more perverse is the notion that animals are more valuable than human beings. Bishop Fred Henry notes:
...As PETA founder Ingrid Newkirk has said, "When it comes to pain, love, joy, loneliness and fear, a rat is a pig is a dog is a boy. Each one values his or her life and fights the knife."
Nevertheless, it turns out that some animals are more equal than others. One would expect that consistency would demand the condemnation of poisoning babies in the womb with a saline solution or cutting them up with surgical tools but Newkirk and Singer don't believe that human beings have the right to life...
I suppose the most frightening aspect of all of this is the mass brain-washing done in our public school system:
Dear Mother Earth,
What is our earth? I know it is the animals. What we can do? We can pick up the garbag and we can take care of the animals. Why is it important? to love you? I love you Mother Earth. If we don't love you everything wil go away.
Perhaps the school system should focus more on spelling than scaring kids into submission.