Sunday, April 25, 2010

America the Beautiful? Not So Much!

Erykah Badu. In her "Window Seat" video, the neo-Queen stripped naked as she walked along the JFK assassination site in downtown Dallas. According to Badu, she was speaking out against "groupthink," or conforming. The singer further noted on Twitter, "the butt naked truth is powerful America!"

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, PETA. When Golden Girls star, Bea Arthur, died a year ago on April 25, she left money to the animal rights organization in her will. To mark the one-year anniversary of her death, PETA published an ad that features the "Golden Girl" attacking the "Golden Arches," McDonald's, for their refusal to stop their chicken-slaughtering practices.

On Earth Day, April 22, on a full-page in the Chicago Tribune, the ad read, "McCruelty: It's enough to make Bea Arthur roll over in her grave." Arthur was a firm supporter of PETA and animal rights activist.

Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution. In a reality-show format, world-renowned chef and best-selling author, Jamie Oliver, attempts to keep Americans alive by improving our eating habits. By teaching America how to cook and prepare healthier foods, Jamie is on a mission to keep (especially) our youth from dying too soon of heart disease, obesity, diabetes and other diseases related to unhealthy eating habits.

Last week, I visited a park with a pond that was riddled with pollution. That's the picture that I have shown. Driving down the street, the expressways are bumper-to-bumper with only one person in each car, all going the same way. Animals are being cloned and treated cruelly, foods are being genetically modified and salt and sugar is abundant in everything because Americans are spoiled, greedy, overindulgent brats.

As I look around at all the unneccesary pollution, poison and savagery, I wonder, how can anyone with a clear conscious treat where they live like we do and not feel "funny" about it?

Seeing such blatant disrespect for Mother Earth gets under my skin like almost nothing else. Like the others, in my capacity as the Texas director of the African American Environmentalist Association, I'm taking on an environmental cause with a fierce vengence.

As a writer, it is my job, my duty and my responsibility to report news and information. I'm obligated to tell the facts and not make shit up. Therefore, in honor of Mother Earth's 40th year, I. will. take. my. pen, and. I. will. write.

I will tell the truth, no matter how harsh. I will reveal the truth no matter how insensitive it may sound. I will appeal to my colleagues and other writers to help me with my mission, and I will cause change. This is my cause. I am an advocate.

Finally, I loved and "got" Erykah's video; I applaud PETA and Bea in life and death and I strongly support Jamie. But for those of you that turned your nose up in disgust at Erykah, rolled negativity off your tongues at PETA or dismissed Jamie as rubbish, *eff u!*

I challenge you to discover something that you're the utmost passionate about; something so meaningful that it keeps you up at night thinking of ways to change it, challenge it, revise it or amend it, and tell me what extremes would you be willing to go, to resolve it.

Revolution. Start yours because I'm starting mine—Get Active. Go Green!

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