PROTECT CLEAN WATER

What I’m going to tell you: We need to protect clean water. It is a resource that is being increasingly threatened with human activity, particularly with regard to fracking and the use of nuclear energy. Bernie Sanders is the only candidate to support if you believe in protecting clean water.

How I’m going to support it: By citing articles and facts regarding clean water and its status on our planet. By giving my appraisal of Bernie Sanders’ character and comparing it to the character assessments of the other main candidates for the presidency, Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. By explaining each candidate’s relationship to water rights and fracking.

Why should you care: Water is the building block of all life. Water is the first thing scientists look for when exploring other worlds via satellite for signs of life. If any one of us today went without water for more than 3 days, we would die. There are already places in the world that are literally running out of water (Pakistan, a very recent example [m.dw.com]).

Hey, water-based life-forms, I’m here today to talk to you about water. Specifically clean water and how it’s being threatened and why this is important. I remember watching Robin Williams’ live comedy act on broadway more than 10 years ago. In it, he did a little bit, adopting George W. Bush’s accent and, holding a water bottle, he pointed to it and said, “This here, one day this shit is going to be more valuable than oil.” It’s not only funny, but insanely true. So true that it was almost unbelievable, ridiculous back in 2000. And now, here we are–Nestle’s ex CEO, Peter Brabeck-Letmathe has already went on record, saying that water is not a human right, and should be privatized. Meaning, he wants everyone to pay for water. This is not only a huge insane amount of bullshit, but it’s also the symptom of the dangerous profit-driven mentality of corporations. Corporations like Nestle apparently don’t believe in humanity, or rights–they believe in profits, especially more than last year. The bottom line. Nestles’ CEO would have us pay for something that is necessary for all forms of life in our planet. And that’s not all. Nestle has attacked GMO labeling as well, lobbying in our government against the people’s rights to know exactly what is in the food we’re eating. Nestle has gone into struggling rural areas and extracted the groundwater from that territory, ultimately bottling it and selling it at a profit, leaving those areas to struggle.

As if it weren’t enough that water rights are being threatened by corporations like Nestle, we also have a bigger problem–water itself, the clean drinkable type, is being threatened. Fracking, one of the most avoidable forms of water pollution, are still going on today. The Scientific American has noted that “fracking operations for oil and natural gas production in the U.S. pose a potentially significant risk of contaminating drinking water sources” because they are shallowly drilled and close to local aquifers. (www.scientificamerican.com) The EPA has concluded that fracking has already contaminated drinking water. (www.insideclimatenews.org/05062015/fracking-has-contaminated-drinking-water-epa-now-concludes). Further fracking studies in Wyoming have concluded with found toxins in the state’s groundwater (www.insideclimatenws.org/news/29032016/fracking-study-pavillion-wyoming-drinking-water-contamination-epa). Aside from fracking, another problem with corroded infrastructure has been pointed out in places like Flint, Michigan, which saw its water contaminated with lead, having switched from treated Detroit Water and Sewerage Department water, to Flint River water which pipes were without corrosion inhibitors, thus leading to lead contamination, causing a serious public health disaster. Four government officials resigned from the crisis, though Governor Snyder still sits in his seat of power. We are in need of government officials who will do what they were elected to do, which is act in the interests of the people. Flint is not the only place where things like this are happening either–Washington DC, Durham and Greenvile, North Carolina, Jackson Mississippi, and Sebring, Ohio were all found to have contaminated water (www.mobile.nytimes.come/2016/02/09/us/regulatory-gaps-lead-levels-in-water-nationwide.html). This is a growing problem that needs to be addressed. Aside from humans who drink water, there are thousands upon millions of species whose world resides in water. Lifeforms whose lives and environments are being threatened by our actions. Most notable and severe of these actions are nuclear power–the Fukushima reactor in Japan’s rupturing 5 years ago has caused in the spillage of radioactive material into the Pacific Ocean. Today, 5 years after the meltdown, the United States is finding radioactive material along its West Coast. According to CNBC, “scientists…say we should expect to see this in the ocean for decades to come. Elevated levels found off the coast of Japan show that the situation is not yet under control, and that the facility is still leaking radiation” (www.cnbc.com/2016/03/10/us-watches-as-fukushima-continues-to-leak-radiation.html). There are already reports of ocean life being found with growths and elevated radiation levels in addition to hundreds of dead bodies of ocean life washing up onto different shores–whales and seals to name a couple different species. This is not being reported as much as it needs to be for the disaster to be taken care of.
There are many organizations that are dedicated to protecting clean water and water rights. Charity: Water is a nonprofit that brings clean and safe drinking water to people in developing countries. MIYA is a company that provides comprehensive urban water efficiency solutions by focusing on reducing Non-Revenue Water, or fresh water that is lost from the distribution system before it reaches consumers. Water.org is a nonprofit founded by MATT DAMON and Gary White that provides access to safe water and sanitation in developing countries. Columbia Water Center, a part of Earth Institute, researches and designs sustainable models of water management. Three avocados, Waterislife, and Puremadi are other very reputable groups that work toward clean water and water rights. If you’re interested in helping out, those are some great organizations to look into.

Water is the building block of all life. Water is the first thing scientists look for when sending satellites and probes out into space to search for life. If a human is without water for more than 3 days, he or she will die. 70 percent of our bodies are made of water and 2/3 of our planet’s surface is covered by water. Of all the people living on Earth, none can afford to go without water. So why are we taking such little care in preserving the resources we have? The Earth is a closed system, much like a terrarium–which means that the same water that is here now has been here for millions and millions of years–we as a species, as an Earth-dwelling race can not afford to count on foreign (from other planets) water resources to sustain us. If we pollute the water we have access to now, we may never recover. Which is why it is more imperative than ever that we elect leaders with a focus on the Earth and its resources. I believe Bernie Sanders is the only viable candidate to lead a more Earth conscious America.

Okay, this is my disclaimer: I am a Bernie Sanders supporter. An avid, ardent, borderline fanatical supporter of Bernie Sanders. I am definitely feeling The Bern. He is the epitome of what I have always felt a politician should be. Ever since I was old enough to care about politics and the news and where the world was heading, I felt like our leaders should be people elected to serve the best interest of the masses who gave them the consent to govern through their votes—not a group of people elected to serve and represent the masses who have made the mention of their very profession akin to a swear word. “Politicians,” we say, with a nasty taste in our mouths, or that feeling of having a really long hair somewhere in your mouth that’s somehow made its way halfway down your throat before you realized it was there.  Anyway, I’m not the only one who thinks this about Bernie Sanders. Cornel West, a popular political scientist has praised Bernie Sanders’ “authenticity and integrity.” Pope Francis very recently said this about Sanders: “I see in Senator Sanders a man of great integrity and moral conviction, who understands these principles and genuinely wants what’s best for all people.” In a recent debate, when Bernie Sanders was asked if he supported fracking, he gave a simple, resounding “No” after listening to a very long, windy, polician-sounding answer from Hillary Clinton on the same question, who concluded that she doesn’t support fracking UNLESS it is heavily watched and regulated–however, as of March 9, 2016, Hillary Clinton still accepts money, fundraising with fracking investors. Many of Clinton’s largest fundraisers are lobbyists for oil and gas corporations. Some of the very biggest represent Chevron, Cheniere Energy, and TransCanada–THESE ARE ALL COMPANIES THAT SUPPORT FRACKING. Also, prior to announcing her candidacy, Clinton received nearly 1 million dollars from the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, which invests heavily in TransCanada and the Keystone XL Pipeline (www.theintercept.com/2016/03/09/hillary-clinton-wants-to-regulate-fracking-but-still-accepts-a-lot-of-fracking-money/) If you believe that Hillary Clinton will accept big money from fracking and then turn around and vote and fight against its interests, please don’t vote, because you are just plain deluded. Hillary Clinton will be just as big a friend to fracking as Donald Trump. Donald Trump’s answer to questions about fracking have led to him claiming that fracking will lead to America’s energy independence from the rest of the world. Though he doesn’t take money from fracking, giving that big a vote of confidence to industries that damage clean water would be a very dangerous move. Even if his claim were true, the amount of fracking necessary would not only result in further water contamination, but it is also becoming apparent that fracking is causing earthquakes in parts of America that were previously generally seismically inactive. As you can see, both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are disastrous candidates when it comes to clean water and water rights. Their reputations are also not the type one would like to see attached to a couple of the next possible leaders of the free world. The Nevada Gaming Commission deemed Donald Trump untrustworthy and as such, ineligible for a gambling license to attach a casino to his hotel in Las Vegas. Hillary Clinton has been called “unethical” by people who worked very closely with her–Jerry Zeifman, who worked on the House Judiciary Committee with her, called her “a liar…She was an unethical, dishonest lawyer. She conspired to violate the Constitution, the rules of the House, the rules of the committee, and the rules of confidentiality.”

I hope this has opened your eyes to the dovetailed importance of protecting clean water AND electing the correct person into office who will make it a priority to preserve our clean, freshwater resources. Water is the most precious resource that we have on our planet, and the one that we are not going to be able to increase. We need to learn how to conserve our resources while carefully curating them at the same time. Please look into the organizations I’ve spoken about, write your congressmen and women and senators to ensure that they do not support fracking. And most of all, please do what you can yourselves to conserve water resources.

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