To the Editor:
So. have you heard the one about the five legged frogs? The joke's on us. Frogs with this as well as other deformities (including eyes growing in their throats) are being discovered all across the nation from the lakes of Minnesota to the rivers of Oregon. Scientists speculate that exposure to toxic chemicals in the water probably causes deformities in the frogs. And if toxic chemicals are doing that to the frogs, you can only guess what they're doing to humans.
That's why OhioPIRG is working to expand our right to know about toxic chemicals in the environment. You might remember the postcards we collected last semester lo Rep. Sherrod Brown and the EPA asking them to increase our right to know about toxic chemicals in our communities. PIRG chapters all across the country collected a total of 30,000 of these postcards and letters, and the result of this is the introduction of a bill into Congress which would require industries to report on more of the chemicals that they are releasing. Of course, industries are spending millions of dollars to keep this kind of information away from the public, and so we still face a tough battle.
We're also working on two other environmental campaigns: Ohio at Risk, and Greening Oberlin. Ohio at Risk will focus on environmental problems in Ohio, initially working to preserve wetlands. Over 95% Of Ohio's wetlands have been destroyed, yet the Ohio EPA is looking to weaken existing wetlands protection legislation. This group will be working to stop this rollback, and protect these important ecosystems. Greening Oberlin will be working together with the Department of Environmental Health and Safety and the town of Oberlin to reduce paper and energy waste here on campus and in the town.
We'll also continue work on Hunger and Homelessness, working with hunger relief programs and homeless shelters in Lorain county. Also, we'll be working on the annual Hunger Clean-Up this Spring to raise money for hunger programs.
Finally we're also continuing to work to get the big money out of politics through our Students Against Political Corruption Group. Politicians raised and spent more than $1 .6 BILLION this past election, by far the most expensive in history. More than half of this money came from less than one quarter of one percent of U.S. citizens. This group will be working to pass serious campaign finance reform to win back our government.
After our successful petition drive last semester, we're looking forward to two more years of fine activism, continuing this semester. We encourage all students to get out and get involved this semester to make an impact in our community, our nation, and our world.
Copyright © 1997, The Oberlin Review.
Volume 125, Number 14; February 14,1997
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