Category: DAPL

Post-Stomach Virus

Thanksgiving was going well enough, until the baby threw up all over me and my aunt’s brand new couch.

Things just got worse from there.

We are emerging from the stomach virus hell. All four of us were stricken, with James and the baby getting it the worse. Only the baby ended up in the ER. (She’s doing much better now; hooray for zofran.)

I spent a lot of time mindlessly scrolling Facebook while the baby glued herself to me over the weekend, and there are any number of topics I could write about now: NoDAPL, anything Shaun King has written in the last week, the hopelessness of a recount, and, most appropriately, how broken the U.S. health care system is, but ultimately, I’m tired.

So this is just a post so that I don’t forget what it feels like to write regularly.

This week will be better.

Day 2

I thought today I would focus on what Trump plans to accomplish in his first 100 days. I heard something about it on my local NPR station after I dropped off the baby this morning. Let me write about that, I thought.

And then I looked it up. Whoa. That is a lot to tackle. I can’t do that in one blog post.

And then a friend posted a link to a White House petition on Facebook. The petition calls to reject Myron Ebell as head of Trump’s EPA transition team.

Here’s how White House petitions work: Anyone can create a petition on the White House’s website. If the petition amasses 100,000 signatures in 30 days, the President’s office has to respond to it.

I admit, I’m not really sure what President Obama can do about President-Elect Trump’s proposed transition team, but it is a way to get some attention.

Scientific American has a really good story about why Myron Ebell is a really terrifying choice to lead anything having to do with the environment. In a nutshell, he’s an outspoken climate change denier who wears that label as a badge of honor. We as a species are at a really critical crossroads in terms of human-caused climate change. Four years of policy that contributes to climate change rather than attempting to mitigate it could have a devastating effect on our future. If you think I’m exagerating, check out this chart of global temperatures since the beginning of Earth to see how quickly we can have an effect.

Then, because I don’t often spend my energy on environmental concerns (not that I ignore them, but I’ve been focused most recently on social justice issues, specifically on racial justice issues), I decided to make that the day’s theme and to place a call to the White House about the Dakota Access Pipeline.

If you don’t know about the DAPL, there are plenty of resources to get background. What’s most concerning to me, however, is that the police are using military tactics like pepper spray and dogs on the demonstrators. Those camped out on Standing Rock land are preparing to hunker down for the winter.

I had a vision today of those protesters being mowed down by bulldozers or bullets or napalm when President Trump gets tired of them.

So I called the White House for the first time ever. The White House has a comment line: 202-456-1111. Anyone can call and make a comment on anything. I asked if they wanted my name, and was told no, we don’t collect personal information. So I told the volunteer who answered that I was calling to urge President Obama to find a peaceful solution to the conflict before Trump takes office.

And I might call again tomorrow. I called at lunch time and had to wait on hold for a little while, but I was able to continue working while I waited.

That’s what I did today to combat the despair. And I think it helped a little bit.

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