There were so many gorgeous moments on Inauguration Day, and like Lady Gaga’s enormous bird brooch as she sang, my heart soared and swooped and dived — from the sheer hopefulness and beauty of the vision that was painted for us.
A vision that, for me at least, could be summoned up in these simple words spoken by President Biden: “America, we give our best to you.”
Already, the Biden administration is keeping its promise to get us onto a path toward climate safety, and to clean up the polluted air that is making people sick, especially in low-income communities and communities of color, who bear the merciless brunt of disease, as they have for decades.
Already, so many of the destructive measures taken by the previous administration have been stopped cold by executive order. We can expect a halt and review of rules governing the release of mercury, a potent neurotoxin; leaks from oil and gas operations; pollution from cars. And America has taken back its seat at the international table by reengaging in the Paris Agreement.
Now comes the hard part.
Members of Moms Clean Air Force worked tirelessly for four years to combat a ruthless deregulatory agenda. Our work was relentless; we were angry, in a defensive position. Now, our work will be more productive because our values of keeping our children safe and healthy are aligned with the people in charge of creating those protections.
But we will still have to be relentless, and demanding, and determined. If we have learned one thing in the last four years, we have learned that we can take nothing for granted. Certainly not the idea that we all have equal rights to clean air and a stable climate.
We vow to give our loved ones our best. And to America, we give our best to you.