My visit to the Florida Natural History Museum Steven calcutt

These two pictures represent an exchange at Chattahoochee Landing on the Apalachicola River between a local Native American leader and a visiting noblemen from the town of Etowah (present day Georgia.) I picked this exhibit as my favorite exhibit because I spent a Spring Break during high school on an Indian Reservation in Florida. I feel like the museum did an excellent job representing the Indian culture. I have been to the South Carolina State Museum's exhibit on Native Americans and they did not do nearly the job that the museum here at UF did representing the Indian culture. The Florida Museum of Natural History did an excellent job representing how a Indian trading with a noblemen would happen. The Etowah noble would come to Chattahoochee Landing with a gift, in this case a plate embossed with a bird man dancing. The local tribe would be around watching the deal happen and they would return the nobleman with containers of goods. This information is something you could not figure out on a normal day at school or work. You would have to either go to an Indian reservation or come to the Florida Museum of Natural History.
These last two pictures are of the ocean exhibit. The ocean is something that I hold near to my heart as I was raised only about 20 miles from it. My entire summers as a child were spent by the sea. Unfortunately, due to human economic value, the oceans in South Carolina are among the most polluted in the country. Some areas even ask you not to swim. Also, due to climate change, the oceans around Charleston are beginning to threaten the property along the beach fronts and destroy the beaches. It is something that really bothers me and I have spend numerous hours writing and calling local congressmen and law makers seeking out help. Unfortunately, due to the incoming Presidential Administration denying climate change and pollution issues many of mine and friends of mine efforts will go to waste. I completely agree with Leopold, we are doomed because people just see economic value off of land. Soon enough, these people will understand their mistake but it will be to late and they will doom us all. I feel like this museum does a good job showing us the dangers of valuing land or in this case, ocean, as economic value. People do not realize how big of a threat pollution and climate change is, we need reminders and I feel this exhibit does a great job.
These last two pictures are of the Butterfly exhibit, this experience was completely different than anything I go through in day-to-day life. In a world filled with the temptations of materialistic gain, racism and hate, it was nice to be able to relax and be surrounded by insects and animals just living off of the land. Like Heschel, I also believe we need to take time away from our hectic lives to appreciate the universe. It helps us understand that we are just animals living on this earth. We might feel like we're more important than, in this case, a butterfly but in the grand scheme of things we are not. We're just another animal contributing (or destroying) the ecosystem. If more people did this more often it may give them the perspective that maybe, we need to be more caring about our environment. Our actions have equal and opposite reactions and if we keep destroying the forest, keep fracking and polluting we will end up destroying everything.


Florida Museum of Natural History

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