My friend was walking down a deserted Mexican beach at sunset. As he walked along, he began to
see another man in the distance. As he grew nearer, he noticed that the local native kept leaning
down, picking something up and throwing it out into the water. Time and again he kept hurling
things out into the ocean. As my friend approached even closer, he noticed that the man was
picking up starfish that had washed up on the beach, and, one at a time, he was throwing them
back into the water. My friend was puzzled.
He approached the man and said. “Good evening, friend. I was wondering what
you are doing.”
“I’m throwing these starfish back into the ocean. You see its low tide right now
and all of these starfish have been washed up onto the shore. If I don’t throw
them back into the sea, they’ll die up here from lack of oxygen.”
“I understand,” my friend replied, “but there must be thousands of starfish on this beach. You can’t
possibly get to all of them. There are simply too many. And don’t you realize this is probably
happening on hundreds of beaches all up and down this coast. Can’t you see that you can’t possibly
make a difference?”
The local native smiled, bent down and picked up yet another starfish, and as he threw it back into
the sea, he replied, “Made a difference to that one!”

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