The year is 1995, congress member Bernie Sanders stands in opposition of a homophobic statement said by Duke Cunningham. Cunningham derisively refers to “homos in the military” to support his argument while (strangely) discussing the Clean Water Act. Sanders, having none of it, quickly rises to the defense of thousands of men and women everywhere. Sanders ire is such that he repeatedly disrespects the Chairman by speaking over him in order to say his piece. [Video Source]

What does this say for Sanders? Well, that’s for you to decide. But to me, it says that for 20+ years strong he has shown his public support for LGBT+ persons everywhere, even in the face of ridicule and disrespect. Unlike some, Sanders has always been vocal about his beliefs concerning the LGBT+ community, and he has always held them. Key word always, and not just when doing so might garner him support for his campaigns. 



Marcus Scribner of ABC’s ‘Black-ish’ is taking action to protect the environment

I’m sometimes asked why I’m so passionate about environmentalism, and my answer is always pretty straightforward. As a Los Angeles native, clean air to breathe and water to drink are two things I don’t take for granted. I’m 17, but I grew up hearing the horror stories about what the city used to be like: Downtown Los Angeles smothered in a cloud of smog so toxic that students had to wear masks outdoors and drink water from wells contaminated with industrial pollution.

We still have a long way to go before everyone gets the clean water and air we deserve. But I’m proud of the progress my city has made. And that progress didn’t magically happen — it came, in part, because of the Environmental Protection Agency.

A lot of people, and young people in particular, might not know much about the EPA, so here’s quick history lesson: In 1970, President Richard Nixon – a Republican — signed into law legislation that established the EPA. Back then, there was overwhelming support to protect our environment (and considering just how awful environmental pollution was back then, it’s easy to see why.) Republicans and Democrats came together to pass some of the most ambitious environmental legislation ever. The Clean Air Act and Clean Water Act, for example, are just two of the many important laws that EPA enforces to protect human health and the environment.

Today, many people my age might assume it was always like this: that clean air and water have always been seen as a right, essential for everyone. We never saw rivers literally on fire, because they were so full of highly flammable pollution. We never saw smog so thick it billowed over cities like a fog. That is what the United States was like when my mom and dad were kids.

Continuing the progress EPA is making to clean up our country is common sense. But you may have heard not everyone in Washington feels the same way. There are some elected representatives who claim that protecting the environment must come at the expense of prosperity.

But this could not be further from the truth. There are now more Americans employed in the solar industry than there are in the coal, oil and natural gas industries combined — and in 41 states plus Washington, D.C., clean jobs outnumber those in the fossil fuel industry. The clean energy revolution will continue and its benefits will be felt beyond those who are securing jobs.

But President Donald Trump is following through on his pledge to reverse much of the progress made under President Barack Obama. Through executive orders, the Trump administration has started to dismantle many protections that are designed to cut dangerous emissions from power plants, cars and trucks and the oil and gas sector.

To make matters worse, Trump also proposed to eliminate the EPA office responsible for coordinating environmental justice programs in its entirety. Vulnerable communities from Flint, Michigan, to Spartanburg, South Carolina, have much to lose if these unconscionable cuts become reality. Mustafa Ali, who recently resigned as head of EPA’s Environmental Justice office, said it best: that to protect public health and the environment is to “make the American dream a reality for all.”

I know many young people question whether they can have an impact on the direction of our country. Believe me, I understand as well. But I know that even in these uncertain times, we can rise up and make our voices heard to our elected leaders. With the March on Science and the People’s Climate March happening on consecutive Saturdays, young people around the world are letting us know that they want to be heard.

It’s a personal mission of mine to make sure the old days never come back — it’s why I work with Defend Our Future, a campaign empowering millennials to take action to protect the environment. Defend Our Future is making it as easy as possible for you to get in touch with your elected representatives. Please take a few minutes to send your senators and representatives a message. Let them know that you want them to protect EPA and our health. Even though I can’t vote yet, I have already reached out to my local representatives, and encourage you to do so as well, because together, we can and must defend our future.

— Marcus Scribner. Marcus Scribner plays Andre Jr. on ABC’s “blackish.” He is an honor student and has been honored with the Peabody Award, multiple NAACP Image Awards and several Emmy nominations.

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Trump expected to drop executive order slashing Obama-era climate regulations

  • He’s already rolled back the Clean Water Act. It was only a matter of time before President Donald Trump came for the Clean Power Plan.
  • Trump is expected to sign a broad executive order Tuesday that will evaluate any rulings or actions on the books that “burden” domestic fuel companies, including coal, gas, oil and nuclear, Bloomberg reports.
  • Those found to be a “burden” will be changed, suspended or eliminated unless mandated by law, deemed pro-business or considered to be in the “public interest” by the administration.
  • The executive order will also do away with two Obama-era rules. The first ensures reviews measuring the environmental impact of an energy project will take climate change into account.
  • The second rule Trump is expected to eliminate is called the “social cost of carbon,” or the SC-CO2, which is a number that estimates the long-term damage that a ton of carbon does to the environment each year. Read more (3/27/17 12:13 PM)

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Trump directs EPA to begin dismantling clean water rule
Stepping up his attacks on environmental protections, Trump takes aim at a signature Obama legacy.
By Evan Halper

“The directive to undo the clean water initiative is expected to be closely followed by another aimed at unraveling the Obama administration’s ambitious plan to fight climate change by curbing power plant emissions. … Trump vowed Tuesday that he would continue to undermine the Obama-era environmental protections wherever he sees the opportunity, arguing they have cost jobs.”

Clean Water Act under attack

Good Op-Ed in the NYT this morning:

The American economy has performed well over the past four decades: real per capita income has doubled since 1970 and pollution is down even with 50 percent more people. The choice between a healthy environment and a healthy economy is a false one. They stand, or fall, together. We’ve been blessed in the United States with abundant water resources. But we also face daunting challenges that are putting new demands on those resources — continuing growth; the need for water for food, energy production and manufacturing; the push for biofuel crops; the threat of new contaminants; climate change and just maintaining and restoring our natural systems.

If we narrow our vision of the Clean Water Act, if we buy into the misguided notion that reducing protection of our waters will somehow ignite the economy, we will shortchange our health, environment and economy.

I don’t quite understand why the EPA is coming under so much attack this election cycle.  I get that some people find any and all regulation reprehensible, but if the government shouldn’t be the ones to regulate the environment, then who should?  Perhaps an independent commission of executives from BP, Exxon, et. al.?  Ya, that’s probably the right solution.

My Administration is committed to keeping our air and water clean, to preserving our forests, lakes, and open spaces, and to protecting endangered species.
—  The lying asshole who put climate change skeptics/deniers in charge of the Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Energy, and Department of the Interior; repealed the Stream Protection Rule; removed funding for the Clean Power Plan, the Clean Air Act, the Green Climate Fund, and the EPA itself; revived the Dakota Access and Keystone XL pipelines; and whose administration is rolling back regulations on methane emissions and vehicle pollution standards and is “reconsidering” the Mercury and Air Toxic Standards and the Clean Water Act
Sometimes Regulations Help

Here are some old photos from Time showing massive pollution in decades past.  Regulations and legislation like the Clean Water Act can help protect our lands, maximize our available resources, and allow us to enjoy them fully.

Cleveland, 1968

The Cuyahoga River, which was so polluted that it ignited into flames in 1957 and later in 1969

The Detroit River, 1968

This waterfall contains taconite tailings from a Minnesotan mining plant that descended into Lake Superior at the rate of 20 million tons per year.

Pulp waste from Hammermill Paper makes up the white mess seeping into Lake Erie above.

A closed beach in Whiting, Indiana.  The beach was closed because the city only had one sewer system for human waste and storm water. 

“Dangerous” levels of septic tank pollution did not prompt the state of Michigan from prohibiting its residents from using this beach.

Millions of tons of raw sewage from the U.S. side of the Niagara Falls drained into this water that would empty…into the Canadian side.


May 28th 1892: Sierra Club founded

On this day in 1892, John Muir founded the famous environmental organisation - the Sierra Club - in San Francisco, California. Muir was a notable conservationist and preservationist and became the Club’s first president. The Sierra Club worked to establish and protect federal national parks, most famously Yosemite National Park. Their cause received a boost during the Progressive Theodore Roosevelt’s presidency (1901-1909), who was a naturalist like Muir. Some of the Club’s most notable successes since 1892 came during Lyndon Johnson’s Great Society programme, including the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act and the Endangered Species Act. The Sierra Club continues to be an influential group in the United States as one of the largest pressure groups in the nation. It has a significant influence over environmental issues and dedicates itself to tackling climate change and damage to the environment, most recently protesting against the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline.

Some things to expect...

¤ Defunding planned parenthood
¤ Roe vs Wade and perhaps other birth control repealed
¤ millions of children cut from health care coverage
¤ repeal of the fed. minimum wage
¤ millions of immigrants deported and families split up
¤ once protected public lands opened up to oil, gas and mining free for all
¤ scientific research stifled
¤ global warming unabated - France accord nullified
¤ tax cuts for the wealthy
¤ putting profit over people in prison system
¤ more voter suppression, gerrymandering
¤ pipelines everywhere
¤ oil drilling in the arctic circle
¤ net neutrality going buh bye
¤ stop and frisk
¤ revival of white nationalism
¤ religion injected into science class
¤ no federal action in Flint MI
¤ labor protections eroded
¤ no equal pay for equal work
¤ repeal of marriage equality and trans rights
¤ investments in the arts gone
¤ privatization of social security
¤ cutting needy families from SNAP
¤ fed. education dollars to private schools
¤ iran nuclear deal gone, possible war
¤ relationship with UN strained and status internationally marred
¤ clean water act - gutted
¤ China cutting off trade relations
¤ no student loan debt reform
¤ no gun show loophole background checks
¤ policies that allow Trump and his brood to personally profit

I’m sure there are more things, I’m just so emotionally exhausted now.

The Women of Qumar (3.8)
  • Bartlet: What are you doing?
  • Charlie: I'm sorry, sir, I had a few minutes.
  • Bartlet: I'm not on you, I'm just asking.
  • Charlie: I'm making notes for a final in Modern American History, the consumer movements in late 20th century America.
  • Bartlet: Modern American history sucks.
  • Charlie: I had a hunch.
  • Bartlet: You want to study history, study the Crusades, the fall of the Roman Empire from Theodosius to Justinian.
  • Charlie: The Visigoths.
  • Bartlet: Damn right, the Visigoths. Modern history's another name for television.
  • Charlie: Yes, sir.
  • Bartlet: Is there any way I can help?
  • Charlie: No thank you, sir.
  • Bartlet: I'm a master of modern history. You can ask me anything.
  • Charlie: What year did we pass the Clean Water Act?
  • Bartlet: I don't know.
It’s true. Republicans have tried to turn liberal into a bad word. Well, liberals ended slavery in this country.“
"A Republican President ended slavery.”
“Yes, a liberal Republican, Senator. What happened to them? They got run out of your party. What did liberals do that was so offensive to the liberal party? I’ll tell you what they did. Liberals got women the right to vote. Liberals got African-Americans the right to vote. Liberals created Social Security and lifted millions of elderly people out of poverty. Liberals ended segregation. Liberals passed the Civil Rights Act, the Voting Rights Act. Liberals created Medicare. Liberals passed the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act. What did conservatives do? They opposed them on every one of those things ­ every one. So when you try to hurl that label at my feet, ‘Liberal,’ as if it were something to be ashamed of, something dirty, something to run away from, it won’t work, Senator. Because I will pick up that label and I will wear it as a badge of honor.
—  The West Wing Season 7 Episode 7
Let me list for you a few of the “Democratic Socialist” contributions to our nation:
  •     Medicare
  •     Medicaid
  •     Medicare Part D medications
  •     Social security
  •     Child Labor laws
  •     40 hour work week
  •     Overtime pay
  •     Family leave
  •     Bankruptcy forgiveness of debts,
  •     Labor unions
  •     Workplace safety
  •     Public fire departments
  •     Public police departments
  •     The national parks
  •     Wildlife preserves
  •     Clean air act
  •     Clean water act
  •     Anti pollution laws
  •     Public education through grade 12,
  •     Public water works
  •     Public utilities for gas and electric power,
  •     Public sewer system,
  •     Public transportation trains and subways,
  •     Postal service,
  •    Safe food standards
  •    Safe Prescription Drugs
  •    Construction building codes,
  •    Hydro electric dams and power stations,
  •    Interstate highway system,
  •    The Affordable Care Act
  •     And countless more…

Our economy is a marriage of both regulated free enterprise and public enterprise. Where free enterprise offers the individual opportunity and public enterprise provides a base of services that make our lives better, safer, convenient and in many ways makes our lifestyle possible.

Earth Day 2015

Earth Day 2015

By Philip Ross

April 22 is Earth Day, the annual event meant to raise awareness about Mother Nature’s health and the efforts being made to protect it. Environmental groups in countries all over the world are gearing up to take their message of good stewardship to millions of people. Below are 23 quotes and sayings to share on Earth Day 2015 to help spread the word. Some are inspiring, others are just for laughs and some come from a place of wisdom.

Earth Day events commemorate what is considered the birth of the modern environmental movement. The first Earth Day was celebrated in 1970 on college campuses across the U.S. and was the invention of Gaylord Nelson, a former Democratic U.S. senator from Wisconsin whose idea for Earth Day was born out of watching the momentum of the student-led anti-war protests of the 1960s and his frustration with D.C. gridlock over enacting environmental protections. “It was a gamble,” Nelson said of the movement. “But it worked.“

It was Earth Day that largely led to the U.S. passing legislation such as the Clean Water Acts and to the formation of the Environmental Protection Agency.

Here are 23 sayings that pay homage to Mother Nature:

1. “Look deep into nature, and then you will understand everything better.” – Albert Einstein
2. “Suburbia is where the developer bulldozes out the trees, then names the streets after them.” – Bill Vaughan
3. “As crude a weapon as the cave man’s club, the chemical barrage has been hurled against the fabric of life.” – Rachel Carson
4. “We have met the enemy and he is us.” – Walt Kelly
5. “Only when the last tree has died and the last river been poisoned and the last fish been caught will we realize we cannot eat money.” – Cree Indian proverb
6. “Here is your country. Cherish these natural wonders, cherish the natural resources, cherish the history and romance as a sacred heritage, for your children and your children’s children. Do not let selfish men or greedy interests skin your country of its beauty, its riches or its romance.” — Theodore Roosevelt
7. “I believe in God, only I spell it Nature.” – Frank Lloyd Wright
8. “Farming looks mighty easy when your plow is a pencil, and you’re a thousand miles from the corn field.” – Dwight D. Eisenhower
9. “Environmentalists have long been fond of saying that the sun is the only safe nuclear reactor, situated, as it is some ninety-three million miles away.” – Stephanie Mills
10. “In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks.” – John Muir
11. “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtfully committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” – Margaret Mead
12. “The earth is what we all have in common.” – Wendell Berry
13. “Keep close to Nature’s heart … and break clear away, once in a while, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean.” – John Muir
14. "That’s the thing about Mother Nature, she really doesn’t care what economic bracket you’re in.” – Whoopi Goldberg
15. “For 200 years we’ve been conquering nature. Now we’re beating it to death.” – Tom McMillan
16. “Today I have grown taller from walking with the trees.” – Karle Wilson Baker
17. “Earth provides enough to satisfy every man’s need, but not every man’s greed.” – Mahatma Gandhi
18. “A true conservationist is a man who knows that the world is not given by his fathers, but borrowed from his children.” – John James Audubon
19. “Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.” – Lao Tzu
20. "An understanding of the natural world and what’s in it is a source of not only a great curiosity but great fulfillment.” – David Attenborough
21. “Sooner or later, we will have to recognize that the Earth has rights, too, to live without pollution. What mankind must know is that human beings cannot live without Mother Earth, but the planet can live without humans.” – Evo Morales
22. “I believe alien life is quite common in the universe, although intelligent life is less so. Some say it has yet to appear on planet Earth.” – Stephen Hawking
23. “Why should I care about future generations? What have they ever done for me?” – Groucho Marx


#PaintThinner in Children’s Cereal Exposed. Today, we understand there are good fats as well as bad fats, and that processed sugar is a bigger culprit when it comes to a child’s diminishing health. The #Inquisitr understands how important it is for parents to keep on top of their children’s health. Apparently, the three most used infant formulas have genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in them. That may anger some parents but not as much as #PediaSure, the health shake for children, containing #Roundup, the weed-killer.
Now, there are reports that parents may be feeding their children paint thinner without even knowing it. Why? It is because it is an ingredient in some of the most popular children’s cereals on the market today.
According to Natural Society, a mother was shocked to find her children’s cereal contained #TrisodiumPhosphate (#TSP). She was wondering why it was even there, given the fact she bought it from Trader Joe’s, a smaller grocery chain known for higher quality foods without unnecessary additives and harmful ingredients. What people may not know is that TSP is an industrial-strength paint thinner. Sometimes going by the names trisodium orthophosphate or sodium phosphate, TSP is well-known among construction workers and developers for being a substitute to mineral spirits to remove paint. What is more disheartening is the fact that Trader Joe’s isn’t the only grocery store known for carrying cereals that contain this paint thinner. As a matter of fact, it is located in hundreds of foods in hundreds of stores because the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has deemed the “additive” as “safe.” If that is the case, why is the activist environmental group, The Clean Water Act, taking serious steps to limit TSP in cleaning supplies because it harms the environment? It is because TSP is a poison.
According to the poison info provided by Pesticide Info, it states TSP should be avoided at all cost due to the high risk of poisoning. #4biddenknowledge

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How Corporate Cash Threatens the Environment

If there’s one issue that hasn’t been talked about enough in this election, it’s the environment.

Yet the difference between the parties is stark: Republicans, bankrolled by polluters like the Koch Brothers, want to cut the EPA and rollback or weaken vital environmental protections like the Clean Air and Clean Water Act, laws that ensure millions of Americans can breath our air and drink our water safely.

Mitt Romney calls the EPA “a tool in the hands of the President to crush the private enterprise system,” and has vowed to block needed protections on things like fracking and carbon emissions.

Interviews include Rep. Raul Grijalva (AZ-7) and policy experts from the Natural Resources Defense Council, National Wildlife Federation, and, who share the history, purpose, and success of our environmental laws, and push back on the Republican lie that environemntal protections are bad for the economy.

With the health of millions of Americans potentially impacted by the dangerous positions of Mitt Romney and Republican lawmakers, it’s vital that this issue isn’t forgotten this election season. Help us spread the word by sharing the video.