This guest post was written by Tina Beattie, Chairwoman of ConservAmerica:
Naming our new, sweet 8 week-old daughter was quite a process. Unlike choosing a name for our 3 year old, whose name met with immediate approval from the family, after choosing the name, Keaton family members would send random e-mail lists of names just as a suggestion. Some complained it was a boys name, others felt it was hard to pronounce, and most importantly what would her nickname be? But, as most parents can relate, once a name was chosen no other name would do. You pick a name that sounds right, that somehow relays the sense you already have of your child, and one that carries with it some of the presence you hope they will take into their future.
At the same time we were choosing a name for our child, the organization I chair was contemplating a name change. Our name – Republicans for Environmental Protection (which incidentally is exactly what we are), had become a barrier for us. The very word environmental was cutting us off from our intended audience, Republicans. The E word closed minds to our message that the GOP has a rich legacy of conservation, and in building market-based solutions to environmental problems.
We hope our new name, ConservAmerica, conveys all that we are. Conserv–Conservatives who are for conservation and stewardship of our natural resources. America–this beautiful land, here and now, and for future generations, because we owe to them to responsibly and prudently pass down a landscape in better shape than we received it. We must work not only to pass along a robust economy, but also open spaces, clean water and air.
One hundred years ago, in 1912, Theodore Roosevelt said, “There can be no greater issue than that of conservation in this country.” TR himself foreshadowed our new name. ConservAmerica. It is just as true today as it was a century ago.
I am delighted to add my name to the many thousands of Moms joining in the good work of the Moms Clean Air Force. And what a name! Moms ARE such a force when protecting and advocating for our children. One of my favorite political stories involves a young Tennessee representative who became the crucial vote in ratifying the 19th amendment, giving women the right to vote. Although he was aligned with the opposition, a last minute phone call from his mother converted him to the cause of the suffragists. We have such power when we speak as mothers and it is imperative that those in office today hear from us. There is no better force for our children, and no greater cause than protecting them from poisons in the very air that they breathe.
Thank you, Tina and ConservAmerica for joining MCAF!