This week the United States government declared by executive order that all meat packing plants shall remain open in the midst of the Coronavirus pandemic despite outbreaks and health risk to employees. In other words, our government just chose bacon over breathing.
While it comes as no surprise that the Trump administration and particularly, the agencies that implement his strategies, refuse to stop promoting their pollution agenda; it baffles me that they are willing to increase the number of American lives lost. More likely than not, those lives are of the poor and most vulnerable — the black and the brown, the elderly and the young.
As coronavirus continues to spread across our country, we are witnessing the mother of all injustices: the sacrifice of life for profit. EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler is leading the charge.
Andrew Wheeler made his priority clear as he steered the EPA to force rollbacks to life saving health protections in the midst of this global pandemic. Under the cover of COVID-19, he has weakened mercury standards, push back against cleaner cars and censored the science we need to insure that we’re doing more than enough to protect our children from the harms related to sickness and disease.
Nevertheless, we are not sitting idly on the sidelines watching the madness. Moms are angry at the inequity, injustice and immorality running rampant and we are making our voices heard.
We know who we are and what we stand for. We know that climate change and air pollution make the impacts of diseases like Coronavirus worse. We know that children’s lungs are more susceptible to illness and made weaker by air pollution. We know that communities that live on the front lines of air pollution are even more vulnerable and have no safe space to escape.
So we’re fighting back.
Last week alone, Moms Clean Air Force organizers nationwide participated in over 35 virtual events and town halls. We reached out to almost 200 elected officials and peppered our members of Congress with questions about how they will keep our families safe.
We didn’t do it alone. Our Moms Clean Air Force community has shown up to fight with us, even during this crisis. You’ve raised your voices, joined us for live conversations, and shared the fight with your community.
As we prepare to celebrate Mother’s Day, we revisit the commitment we made to our friends and partners at the Equitable and Just National Climate Platform. We’ve promised that our work will help to advance the goals of economic, racial, climate, and environmental justice to improve the public health and well-being of all communities, while tackling the climate crisis.
Keeping this promise is important now more than ever — and if it takes every ounce of our mom power, we’re in the fight for the long haul.
So here’s our Mother’s Day message: We choose breathing over bacon. We choose safety over sacrifice. We choose protection over pollution. We choose our children over EVERYTHING.