Oh jo, I do love you so...
And please know that although I am indeed personally hearth broken, I also know that this lament can be song in virtually every state regarding ecological woes.
I do truly believe that it is too late for the 'citizens' of southeast Louisiana--for long before the oil spill, long before we all knew the names Katrina and Rita, we happened to be the nation's chemical toilet. A pay toilet at times, but nevertheless, a toilet.
I can't even complain that our own local government sold us down the river because we are at the end of it.
And I've said it a million times--if all I can do is chop my own head off and put it on a stick as a warning to others to not tread the same path, then that's what I'll do.
People need to know that Natural Gas is not necessarily clean--the toxic by products of those rigs are no more regulated than the deep sea drilling was. The government wouldn't even know where to begin with such regulations--no one seems to have a list of what agents are used in production.
I remember watching The Jetsons, and as a kid being excited about the possibilities of future technology. With all the distraction of the "cool toys" they had, I neglected to take note that they lived in glass bubbles in the sky...
And how ironic that after a twenty year war on drugs--regulations designed to legislate a moral code of sobriety that dictate what chemicals a person can willingly imbibe, that the chemical warfare that corporations has not only been neglected, but that neglect allowed such a profit margin that our own government can be bullied by those corporations. (Portions of public lands have been leased off as well, to satiate the incessant greedy needs of us all--as the waste water contaminates streams and other natural watering holes for endangered species that were supposed to be protected by the existence of these lands.)
You can sing this song wherever you find indiscriminate logging practices that weaken a mountain to create mudslides in even the most occasional "rain event". You can sing this song in any trailer park, as most of the trailers (not just FEMA-provided) are made of pressboard which incorporates formaldehyde, which would be totally safe if you can live a life without scratching, denting, or getting moisture on any of that stuff. Otherwise you are going to suffer the consequence of toxic inhalants. We dredge our rivers, the conduits of many chemical waste by-products, but no one ever thinks about where "away" is when they throw something away. After questioning some guys who made a living that way, you might find it interesting, or like me, appalling to know that the dirt and much that is dredge out is sold back to farming industry as an augment to the land. To fill our fat stomachs, we have injected growth hormones and force-fed fats to our animals, and we scratch our heads in puzzled wonder when our children start hitting puberty at age nine as the norm, and skinny little girls have breasts the size of...shrug.
More irony? In Los Angeles, where the smog is so thick that "air alerts" or whatever they are called have been common practice for three decades, people who smoke cigarettes can't even find a smoking area outside.
I know my brain is scrambled, but that just didn't seem logical to me until I wondered if they were worried someone might blow the damned place up.
So that little song is my white flag of surrender. I no longer give a damn about smoking anything any more. And I actually believe that in certain parts of the United States, a nice REGULATED shot of tequila is probably better for my liver than a glass of tap water.
But I tell you what, Jo. Just so you know that I still have my humor and a few of my wits about me, should you happen to give me a call I will let you in on the inside joke of this post, that song, and my idea of a true survivor.
I love you dearly, lovie. And honestly, as dire and bleak as all the above sounds, please know that I intend to live as I have always, in the spirit of my fine city--I'll have a good laugh in the midst of my crying.
Much love to you.