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  • Writer's picturestephanieraffelock

Pro-Planet and Words that Have Power

Outside my windows, the west is on fire. Smoke hangs thick in the Rogue Valley. Friends and neighbors wear masks when they venture out. Below us are the fires in California, burning so hot that they create their own weather. Above us fires from central Oregon eat away at brittle terrain, battered by an ever-spreading drought. And further north Washington state burns like nobody’s business. Each time the wind shifts, choking smoke from a different direction blows into the valley where I live.

Climate change is not a possibility up the road. We are living in climate change. If you are a denier and want to get up in my face about how the climate is always changing, I can only offer you this: Our lack of conservation and egregious polluting continues to contribute to the extreme and unprecedented weather events we are experiencing, and that is the truth.

The west is getting drier and the east is getting wetter. Tornados and hurricanes are stronger, and as Bob Dylan once famously sang, “you don’t need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows.” Therefore I call bullshit on any stupid politician telling me that they don’t believe in climate change. What does this new and volatile model bring, other than more instability? And I am asking that question of both climate change and our political body. Take your pick.

I was happy to see President Obama talk about climate change in Nevada yesterday. I am always happy when an elected official recognizes and offers intelligent discourse, acknowledging that our planet is sick. She has a fever and you can see it on the west coast of the country. I still hold out for action. It’s not yet too late.

So here’s my new word: Pro-planet. Words have power. We all know what “the 99%” means, not because it was defined by someone, but because our collective consciousness defined it to a point where it became a political battle cry, underscoring the chasm between our growing have and have not society.

I want a word, a word that I can hurl at politicians who want my vote. A word that defines a deeply held, moral conviction. Do not give away your vote to a single person who is not Pro-planet. We once had a proud and noble government that worked for the people. It has been slipping from our grasp for decades and not only are we paying the price, but the planet that we live on is paying a price. I only have one bullet in my arsenal and that is my vote. My vote, coupled with your vote and other votes can become stronger than money and the propaganda that money breeds.

I want a Pro-planet president and a Pro-planet congress and senate. In the meantime, the world is burning outside of my windows.

I have never asked anyone to “like” my posts or re-blog, or anything like that. But this is not about promoting my self; this is about creating a word that can grow teeth and traction. Please “like” this on WordPress, Linked-In and Facebook in order to spread the word. Please re-post my essay. Let’s see if we can collectively define a word that has the potential to instigate change. Start referring to yourself as Pro-planet.

Signing off today as Pro-planet. I love this earth and I choose to stand and be counted in that way.

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