Sandra Steingraber

Please read:

The Whole Fracking Enchilada by Sandra Steingraber..

The latest technique for extracting natural gas trumps every other environmental assault.

Posted January 10,2011

"The Whole Fracking Enchilada" is a short column that takes less than 5 minutes to read, but it summarizes the situation perfectly.  If you have a few extra dollars, please send it to Orion Magazine since they hire people like Sandra and we should all help to pay her expenses..  If you are Wealthy and you are intelligent, please think of some way that you can help to effect the necessary changes in the Clean Water laws of this Planet and then implement those ideas.

To me it seems that this is the cycle of activism...

Step #1 You read about some man-made horror and you get upset or mad about it..but you do nothing and you go back to your normal distractions..   You do this many, many times (possibly for years..).

Step #2 Something happens that effects you directly and you are FORCED to do something because your personal situation (or your conscience) has made "doing nothing" unacceptable to you.

Step #3 You educate yourself to the best of your abilities and/or you join a group and run around trying to get other people to care...

Sometimes you are successful, but as a general rule, the world of other people has never heard of you (or your issue) and they are all caught up in their own personal versions of Step #1 


Please understand, there are a certain amount of our fellow man who will never care to help even if they could (and should) because they are dysfunctional or they are criminals themselves..

What concerns me is this....To me, it seems that a LOT of people fall into this Dysfunctional/Criminal group. A lot of them have positions of authority in Private corporations and a lot of them have positions of authority in the Public Sector. 

Step #4 If you are persistent and lucky enough to change the situation that was bothering you, it seems that eventually, the criminals and the semi-functioning members of the dysfunctional group, regain their momentum and the problem re-asserts itself.

It may be in a a slightly different form (or it may be the exact same problem.).

Case in Point:

More than 50 years ago it was decided that Human beings and the Ecosystem that we live in need to have clean water to remain healthy and alive.

Clean Water Laws were passed,  Superfund programs were funded, the EPA was created...Eagles were saved (from DDT, i believe) etc....

Question:       Why do we (as a culture in the United States) have to debate this again?

Now we are faced, with this ever growing problem of contaminated water supplies and the associated health problems and we are treating it as if is a new topic that needs to be discussed and voted upon and resolved...

I think that it is time that we sit back and look closely at what is wrong here, and see if there is any possible way to fix this cycle of destruction/excess consumption and pain that we seem to be locked into..

I wonder if there are enough Moral, Wealthy and Informed people in this society to make Rationality and Sustainability the Law of the land.

I wonder if it is possible for them to somehow use their combined influence to force Permanent Clean water Laws to be written and enforced.

I thought up this cartoon the other day.  If you are an artist, please send me your sketches and I will post the best one on the Home Page of RunningWater.Us.  (and of course give you artistic credit for it..)

Picture a municipal swimming pool that is just about to open for the day, and there is a long line of Happy kids waiting to get in so they can swim and have fun...

There is a man at the gate and he is pointing to a sign on the wall that has all the regulations of the pool posted.

At the bottom of the list of regulations is the following official reminder:  Remember!  You are only allowed to Pee in the pool once a month. If you have fulfilled your quota for the month, please use the restrooms.

You see my point...When it comes to Water, we need to enact zero pollution tolerances...

We have been treating our Ecosystem as if it was Spring fed from some magical source and never needed to be maintained or protected...  The world is getting smaller every decade.  We need to Outlaw our fellow "swimmers" from contaminating our shared resources as effectively as we would react to people doing things that they shouldn't be doing in a public swimming pool..  

If the majority of people just ignore the problem, we are not going to like the result that we will all be forced to live with.

My opinion has no effect...You all need to do something, (if anything helpful is going to occur).

Ok...Back to Sandra...

Ecologist, author, and cancer survivor, Sandra Steingraber, Ph.D. is an expert on the environmental links to cancer and reproductive health. She received her doctorate in biology from the University of Michigan and master’s degree in English from Illinois State University. She is the author of Post-Diagnosis, a volume of poetry, Living Downstream, and coauthor of a book on ecology and human rights in Africa, The Spoils of Famine. Formerly on faculty at Cornell University, Sandra Steingraber is currently Distinguished Visiting Scholar at Ithaca College in Ithaca, New York. She is married to sculptor Jeff de Castro. They are proud parents of five-year-old Faith and two-year-old Elijah.


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