This change really takes me out of my comfort zone. I am the type of person that prefers to keep her politics private. I don't really like trying to change people's minds - I prefer to let them come to their own conclusions without my thrusting my opinions on them. If they ask for my advice, of course, I'll respond, but I would never venture to tell someone outright that I disagree with them.
But to really ensure environmental change, government has to become involved. Canada's current environmental platform leaves something to be desired. I am going to do something about it.
Among other organizations, the David Suzuki Foundation occasionally sends out form letters that you can email to prominent government officials (the Prime Minister, the Environment Minister and the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, for example). These letters always encourage the powers that be to take the environment into consideration when forming national policy.
I received one such letter this week, encouraging us to write to Environment Minister Peter Kent to ask for clean air and healthy oceans (http://action.davidsuzuki.org/oceans). When I originally received this notice, the goal was for 2500 letters to be sent. If you look at the link now, the new goal is 8000!
I usually delete these emails when I receive them - I am not comfortable sending these kind of letters to government. But this week, I filled the letter out and emailed it. What changed my mind? The knowledge that although my 366 changes are great, they are still on an individual level. We need national and global level action to help correct the environmental damage being done to our planet. I realize that I still have a long way to go - there are many "big" issues that I have not yet tackled on an individual level (such as owning two cars, buying green energy, eliminating plastic completely from our house). But I think that there are changes that need to be made that I can't do on my own.
It felt weird sending the letter, but in a good way. I am finally trying to influence government politics, instead of just complaining about how those in government can't get it right.
The inspiration for this blog came after reading Vanessa Farquharson's book, Sleeping Naked is Green, and wondering if her new eco-lifestyle was really applicable to a family of 5 that was already fairly environmentally friendly. At the urging of a friend, I took on the challenge of trying to improve my family's "green-ness", using the book as a template. This blog will record our attempts to improve our environmental foot-print one small change at a time.
Thursday, June 9, 2011
Start to be more politically involved (Change 121)
Posted by Eco Mama at 10:09 PM
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Woohoo! The more the merrier! I hope you keep up with this change. The current government can definitely use a good and proper wake up call.ReplyDelete
Bombarding them with a letter campaign might not always get results, but at least it tells them that we are keeping a close eye on them, and that they better not try to pull a fast one on us.
Like you, I'm working on becoming more politically active as a way to boost environmental issues. I just started reading Elizabeth May's "Losing Confidence" to learn more about our parliamentary system (and its woes). And I joined a non-profit group called "Fair Vote Canada" that supports proportional representation.ReplyDelete
I'm impressed with David Suzuki, so I really look forward to visiting the link, and I'm impressed with you for taking it to the next level. thanks for challenging me to consider the same!!ReplyDelete
Thank you everyone, for your comments and support. As I said, it's really out of my comfort zone, but I don't feel right complaining about things, if I'm not trying to make an effort to change them.ReplyDelete