Discuss: Household Tips from Warrior Mom!
Thank you for making this important point. In my activism efforts against the blatant and unregulated use of toxic chemicals I often get fed up with people who think “awareness” is the answer. We cannot shop our way out of this toxic mess of epic proportions thatin which we are currently enveloped. Laws and regulations are needed to stop the blatant and ubiquitous use of toxic chemicals. It’s past time.
Last week I went to DC and became one of the growing wave of people being arrested in front of the White House trying to stop the Tar Sands Pipeline. My first experience of non-violent Civil Disobedience. I would not have done this without going through previous stages. I had tried to be a smarter consumer, and had tried to spread the word about energy conservation and buying wind power, etc. Over a period of 4-5 years, I have learned from Sandra’s articles, speeches and new book (among other sources)that this will not suffice. It will take time and a steady drumbeat of voices and messages, for us to stop viewing ourselves as consumers and return to being citizens.
Reading “Raising Elijah” helped me to harrass the local homeowner’s association to replace a CCA-treated structure, and next week I begin a reading/discussion group for parents concerned about environmental health. I hope to address immediate concerns, and lead the discussion toward the outward manifestation of our inward terror about toxins: reform of chemical policy in this country. When I have to buy toys for my child that are approved for sale in Europe in order to feel good about them, something’s gotta change. When I have to forego basically all restaurants because there aren’t any that serve organic food where I live, and I don’t care to pollute my body or those of my family, something’s gotta change. When I am fearful of the dust tracked into my daughter’s preschool, and the quality of the air in her “temporary” classroom…something has got to change. Thanks for a great article. I’ll be sharing it next week.
Thank you Sandra & Orion for this article! I co-founded the Environmental Health Strategy Center, an organization working to reform our broken chemical safety laws and have been struggling with exactly this situation- there are so many people looking to shop safely and so little tendency to as you said “stop digging and disarm”. It is our constant work to organize people to turn their legitimate concern into a response of the right magnitude. It is helpful to see this struggle described by someone else in such an eloquent way- my appreciation to you. I’ll no doubt be using this article to spark discussions within our organizations grassroots base.
I am researching what actions people have taken against toxic pollutions that have successfully resulted in changed policies or regulations in their communities. Please let me know what you have done or are doing.
In my community the issue now is regulation of a very toxic fumigant, methyl iodide, a known carcinogen. I appreciate the work of both Sandra Steingraber and Orion Magazine that educates and inspires us.
How fortunate we are to have Sandra Steingraber’s beautiful, articulate voice speaking out for educating and protecting our kids,families and communities from the toxins and poisons that surround us. Who ever would think that being sane could be pained as “subversive”...but we live in an economy that puts so little value into environmental and human health. Thank you, Sandra, for saying what others cannot say, and for giving inspiration to us all.
Once again, truth beautifully written. I agree that WIFS (well-informed futility syndrome) is a disease most of us suffer from to one degree or another. I heard a speaker advise recently: to contact act it, always pair environmental information with a call to action. Sandra has done a superb job of that.