2009 Senate Joint Resolution 82
ENROLLED JOINT RESOLUTION
Relating to: commemorating the 40th Earth Day celebration.
Whereas, Gaylord Nelson, a former United States Senator from Wisconsin, was born and raised in Clear Lake, Wisconsin, in Polk County and is recognized as one of the leading environmentalists of the 20th century who worked to create a new era of international awareness of the environment; and
Whereas, Gaylord Nelson served in the Wisconsin state senate from 1949 to 1959, as governor of the state of Wisconsin from 1959 to 1963, and in the United States Senate from 1963 to 1981, truly representing the progressive values learned as a boy from Clear Lake; and
Whereas, Gaylord Nelson created and passed legislation to ban phosphates in household detergents and to ban the use of dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT) and legislation that created the Apostle Islands National Lakeshore and the St. Croix Wild and Scenic Riverway and protected other important Wisconsin and national treasures and worked tirelessly to ensure clean water and clean air for all Americans; and
Whereas, Gaylord Nelson celebrated and founded the first Earth Day, on April 22, 1970, which was by far the largest celebration and environmental grassroots event in history at that time; and
Whereas, Gaylord Nelson led an unparalleled period of legislative and grassroots activity in the country that spurred the passage of over 25 pieces of environmental legislation from 1970 to 1980, including the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, and the National Environmental Education Act; and
Whereas, environmental leadership was not Gaylord Nelson's only calling as he fought for civil rights, challenged drug companies and tire manufacturers to protect consumers, enlisted for the War on Poverty, and took a stand against Senator Joe McCarthy, the House Un-American Activities Committee, and the Nixon White House to defend and protect civil liberties; and
Whereas, in 1995, Gaylord Nelson was awarded the highest honor accorded civilians in the United States, the Presidential Medal of Freedom; now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the senate, the assembly concurring, That the legislature of the state of Wisconsin honors the life and work of a great Wisconsin citizen, Senator Gaylord Nelson, and celebrates with thankfulness his legacy and the 40th Earth Day celebration on April 22, 2010.