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Get Political for Tu BiShvat


As you may know, tonight and tomorrow are Tu BiShvat— the Jewish holiday celebrated as a universal birthday for the trees— often compared to Arbor Day.

If you’re sick of reading The Giving Tree for the millionth time this year, and you’ve already eaten enough dried fruit to give you a fiber overdose, here are a few things you can do to get just a little more radical this year:

  1. Contact politicians. Yes, we know, you’ve already had to do it 5 times this week for some reason or another, but on the other hand, what’s one more?
    There aren’t any bills in particular right now that need attention, but you can still call your Congressional Representative. Tell them that climate change is an important issue to you, and that they should prioritize it going forward, especially if there’s legislation that puts the environment at risk. Also, there’s no time like the present to mention the Dakota Pipeline.
  2. Donate to an eco-cause. Once again, you may have been giving a lot of tzedakah lately— maybe to the ACLU or Planned Parenthood. But if you have any left to spare, why not try an organization that fights for a sustainable future? If you want to go the Jewish route, try Hazon— they do amazing work with food sustainability.
  3. Guerrilla gardening. As in, secretly plant something in land that’s being underused— like a vacant lot, or a broken up piece of street. You can wear all black and feel like a vigilante. And of course there are online resources to help you get started.
  4. Change your eco-behavior. Sure, every Tu B’Shvat comes with a message of “recycling is important!,” and while that is true, step up in one way this year. Go vegetarian for one day a week, or see if you can go a month only eating locally. We here at Jewcy give you permission to be as sanctimonious about it as you like. You’re welcome.
  5. Give up toilet paper. Sure, this fits into the previous action, but we feel that it deserves its own mention. This is really a thing. Alternatives include bidets and washable cloths. We’d be lying if we said anyone at Jewcy was going to do it. But please contact us if you give it a try.

So happy Tu BiShvat! May you enjoy a new type of fruit that isn’t starfruit or dragonfruit, because for some reason those are the only two new fruits anyone ever seems to use?

Tweet at us with what you’ve done this holiday that’s radical (so long as it isn’t eco-terrorism, please).

Viva la eco-revolution.

Image by Sarah Santos, via Flickr.

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