Pin It
Favorite

Spokane's Message to the World 

click to enlarge arts_culture2-1.jpg

Expo '74 was a bit ahead of its time with a theme of environmental awareness and stewardship. Earth Day had only started in 1970, and surprising as it might sound today, the idea of the need for nations to limit their consumption was just beginning to enter mainstream thinking. Inside the U.S. Pavilion, the words "The earth does not belong to man, man belongs to the earth" (attributed to Chief Seattle) dominated the entrance.

click to enlarge arts_culture2-2.jpg

But Expo also presented its credo — a statement of purpose declaring that along with all the fun, there was a serious message, delivered by a city that had to reclaim its much-abused waterfront to even host the World's Fair. (After his visit to Spokane, Lee Iacocca, then president of the Ford Motor Company, said the World's Fair looked like it succeeded in "recycling Spokane.")

Entitled "This We Believe," it was delivered to the 85,000 who came to witness opening day on May 4, 1974. Just before President Richard Nixon officially opened the Fair, beloved entertainer Danny Kaye read our manifesto:

click to enlarge arts_culture2-3.jpg

“This we believe: That the universe is a grand design in which man and nature are one.

"That planet earth, a small part of the universe, is the residence of mortal man whose needs and aspirations are limited by the finite resources of planet earth and man's own finite existence.

"That man is the custodian of his environment, as the environment is the custodian of man.

click to enlarge arts_culture2-4.jpg

"That man, in his growing wisdom, will renounce the age-old boast of conquering nature lest nature conquer man.

"That the skies and the seas and the bountiful earth from which man draws his sustenance are the preserves of all mankind, and that in the brotherhood they derive from nature, the nations of the earth will join together in the preservation of the fragile heritage of our planet.

"We believe in the restoration of the reverence of nature, which once filled our own land where the American Indian roamed in respectful concert with his environment.

"We believe that the human spirit itself must set its own limitations to achieve a beauty and order and diversity that will fill the hearts of the children of the world with a new and happier vision of their destiny.

"We believe that from this city of Spokane there goes forth today to the world the message that the time of great environmental awakening is at hand.

"All this, we believe."

  • Pin It

Latest in Arts & Culture

  • Fear and the Faithful
  • Fear and the Faithful

    Into the heart of the NCAA tournament over three days in Seattle
    • Mar 25, 2015
  • Bringing it Home
  • Bringing it Home

    The Gonzaga women make a Cinderella run that brings them to Spokane for the Sweet 16
    • Mar 25, 2015
  • Ascending Artist: Brian Houghton
  • Ascending Artist: Brian Houghton

    How one still-evolving artist learned not to be constrained by conventions
    • Mar 25, 2015
  • More »

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Today | Sat | Sun | Mon | Tue | Wed | Thu
Explorations XIV: student invitational

Explorations XIV: student invitational @ Chase Gallery

Mondays-Fridays. Continues through March 31

All of today's events | Staff Picks

More by Ted S. McGregor Jr.

  • Those Teeth Are Sharp
  • Those Teeth Are Sharp

    Publisher's Note
    • Mar 25, 2015
  • Wins, Losses and Life
  • Wins, Losses and Life

    The parallels between the careers of father-and-son hoop stars Terry and Parker Kelly are eerie — and enlightening
    • Mar 18, 2015
  • More »

Most Commented On

  • The Food Guru

    The timing couldn't be better for food expert Alton Brown to check out Spokane's dining scene
    • Feb 25, 2015
  • The Java Experience

    Caffé Affogato brings Italian-style coffees to Saranac Commons
    • Mar 11, 2015
  • More »

© 2015 Inlander
Website powered by Foundation