What Gulf Coast Congressman Gene Taylor wanted the Easter Bunny to bring him.
South Mississippi Living 4/07

Saturday, May 26, 2007

Coffee, Tea, Contaminated Water?

Coffee, Tea, Contaminated Water?

A recent front page headline in the Gulf Coast’s daily paper, the Sun Herald, announced the latest in Katrina-related aftermath: “Rural wells may be in danger: Buried debris full of contaminants.” To date, “virtually no cancer-causing chemicals” have been detected. Virtually none? Good Lord! Who wants to drink, cook with, or bathe in water containing “virtually no cancer-causing chemicals”?

Wanna bet that Bush’s EPA will proclaim the water is safe to drink just as it had said the air around the Twin Towers was safe to breathe in the aftermath of 9-11? We’ll see how safe is “safe to drink.”

How’s about serving up some of that water with “virtually no cancer-causing chemicals” to the next quarterly national Republican Party meeting? Their food can be cooked with it, and this Republican gathering can be served the food specially prepared for this festive occasion. Their tea and coffee can be made with that water from the very same source. Heck, I would personally volunteer to serve it to those Republican big wigs at this important gathering.

I wouldn’t even say a word. I would do my best not to roll my eyes or allow a smirk to cross my face as the ReTHUGlicans spewed their propaganda. Instead, I’d occupy myself thinking of that great scene in Erin Brockovich when she and Ed Masry, her attorney boss, met with PG&E’s lawyers. You remember that one? Julia Roberts did such a great job in that role.

The rural residents and their attorneys said that community exposure to the carcinogen hexavalent chromium, or chromium-6 — in desert water allegedly tainted by PG&E in the 1950s and 1960s — led to widespread illness and deaths.”

In the scene I’m thinking about, PG&E’s attorneys met with Brockovich and Masry. One of PG&E’s corporate suits picked up a glass of water on the table and raised it toward her mouth. Just as she was about to sip from the glass, Erin informed her that the water had been brought in special from Hinkley, Calif. You may recall that Hinkley was one of the towns with the alleged cancer contaminated water. PG&E’s attorney glared at Erin and put down the glass of water without drinking a drop. A powerful scene.

Just as the movie imitated life, we can envision imitating the movie. Can you imagine the look on the Republican faces as they are informed of the source of the water was used to cook their meal, brew their coffee and tea, and pour into their water glasses? Rather than ruin the whole evening, perhaps it would be kinder to inform them of the water’s source long after they had finished their dessert.

Of course, it really wouldn't matter when we told them the water was specially brought in from Mississippi. Surely to goodness, Bush's EPA will have asserted that hte water's source was clearly good enough to drink, eat, and bathe in. So these Repulicans wouldn't have much to worry a out, now would they?

More coffee, anyone?

PS No mainstream media outlet has picked up on this story. In the aftermath of Katrina, the ever passionate Anderson Cooper with CNN and NBC’s award winning Brian Williams reported tirelessly from this Katrina-ravaged region. Cooper actually came to my hometown of Bay St. Louis, Miss., and the neighboring town of Waveland, both of which Katrina wiped out.

But today, silence. Though both reporters were all over the Hurricane Katrina story in its immediate aftermath, neither man nor their media outlets has remained focused on Katrina’s continuously unfolding devastation, much less with regard to the Bush Administration’s deliberate neglect.

We need these fine reporters to return to the passion and commitment to reporting continuously on this natural disaster of epic proportions. How do we do that? You know. We just raise a little political hell from all over the country! Just let your fingers do the walking! Here is a phone script with the phone numbers for each show, and here is an email letter with the email addresses for each of them, too.

Lord knows it’s getting hotter every day down here in Katrina land, and our desire to reach for a cool glass of water is mighty tempting. ;)

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