Tuesday, January 25, 2011

When H2O = Help 2 Oppose

I have been thinking about Cape Cod water a lot recently. One reason is Cambridge water tastes awful, despite filtering. I have to force myself to drink it. On the other hand, Wellfleet water is sweet and delicious. It comes from our sole-source aquifer, not a reservoir. We take Wellfleet water for granted. I hate knowing that the utility company has already done a limited amount of spraying in our town, before the protests began, and will do much more starting in April.

Some background: Federal law requires the removal of vegetation under the power lines. State law allows the use of herbicides. Due to the state preemption laws, promoted by chemical companies and enacted after Hudson, Canada succeeded in banning herbicides, our town cannot stop the utility company by itself. What citizens like you and me can do, however, is spread the word.

In case you hadn't noticed, our whole country is in a corporate stranglehold.

Glyphosate is one of the synthetic chemicals that will be a part of the spraying cocktail. Glyphosate is better known by the name an advertising firm invented: Roundup. This toxic chemical is made by Monsanto, the same company that has been assiduously buying up seed companies and waging a silent war on organic products.

What I don’t understand is how executives can put profit ahead of health. How can anyone be in favor of endocrine disruption? (Read more at Theo Colborn's Endocrine Disruption Exchange.)

Public understanding of these issues is growing, although they are rarely reported in the media, which also genuflects to corporate power. Thank goodness for the Internet, and blogs! (Read about the scandal of toxic chemicals being detected in pregnant women's bodies at Living Large in Our Little House and check out the latest on the pesticide killing our pollinators at Safe Lawns.)

On Wednesday night, in Hyannis, there will be a talk about chemicals in the environment, and how to protect the Cape Cod water supply. This talk is being held at the Hyannis Golf Club, which makes me wonder whether the Hyannis golf course has already banned herbicides?

As I left the State House last week, dollar bills, marble columns, and poisoned babies spun through my head like in a slot machine. What would be the magic combination that would stop the utility company’s plan to spray herbicides on Cape Cod?

Tonight, at the Wellfleet Public Library, the Green Task Force will ask for a commitment from Wellfleet Selectmen to take our town on a greener course. While economic reasons will be presented, education of the public is a major component of this plan. Across the country, communities need to unite, think local, and Help 2 Oppose corporations like Monsanto ... In the words of JFK: "Ask not what your country can do for you. Ask what you can do for your country." The famous quote works against corporate power, too.

Do you still use Roundup, or have you found an alternative that is less toxic to the environment? Does it bother you that corporations are taking over our world? What do you think of the latest merger, ComCast's purchase of MSNBC? Do you think former corporate leaders should be allowed to hold government jobs? Do you worry about toxic chemicals in drinking water and GMOs overwhelming organic crops? Will you speak out and H20?