This is the Insurgent Radio Kiosk for Friday, September 6th
From the very start of our nation, the most popular forum for debating and shaping our democratic rights was not stately legislative halls, but rowdy beer halls.
Indeed, “pub democracy” remains strong across our country, as is now being shown by a hardy group of democracy rebels in Toledo, Ohio. The people of this city on the edge of Lake Erie were literally sickened in 2014 when a toxic algae bloom poisoned the lake, which is the source of their drinking water. People were outraged that state officials, who were in the pocket of the polluters, then did nothing to protect the lake from more poisoning.
Mulling this over while quaffing beers in a local pub, the rebels hit upon a novel thought: What if Lake Erie could protect itself by asserting its legal right to “exist, flourish, and naturally evolve?” Thus was born the Lake Erie Bill of Rights, which the group proposed as a city charter ballot initiative. They got double the number of signatures required to put the proposition on February’s ballot, mounted a door-to-door people’s campaign to counter a media blitz partially funded by such giants as Coca-Cola and FedEx – and they won! A whopping 61 percent of Toledo’s voters said YES to recognizing legally-enforceable rights for the natural world.
Supercilious corporate elites, however, refuse to let such a trifling matter as the will of the people interfere with their sense of entitlement to poison for profit. So they’ve now gotten top Ohio officials to assert in a court filing that the state is the “proprietor in trust” of Lake Erie. Therefore, claim the officials, local voters have no power to deny so-called corporate “persons” the permission to pollute real people’s water.
Of course, the democracy rebels are not about to back down, so keep up with them at www.LakeErieAction.org.
Hightower’s commentaries are brought to you by The Hightower Lowdown, the monthly newsletter with Hightower’s take on what Wall Street and Washington are up to. For information, visit hightowerlowdown.org.
It’s This Weekend’s Action Calendar!
A free screening of the acclaimed documentary film “This Changes Everything”, examining capitalism versus the climate, will be shown this evening at 6:30 p.m. at the First Unitarian Society of Madison, 900 University Bay. A free community potluck meal will precede the screening at 5:45 p.m. Presented as part of the First Unitarian’s First Friday Film series. Phone 233-9774 for information.
A Roost Realty Green Homes Workshop on Solar 101 will be offered tomorrow, Saturday, September 7th, from noon to 1 p.m. at the Goodman Community Center’s Ironworks Building, 149 Waubesa Street. This is the workshop for you if you’re thinking of installing solar, but aren’t sure of how to begin. Get tips on when and where to install, and how to take advantage of tax credits and other financial incentives that can lower installation costs. The workshop is free, but please pre-register today by visiting email@example.com
Bring your favorite dog to the Goodman Pool, 325 West Olin Avenue, for a free dog paddle in the pool on Sunday, September 8th, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Then take advantage of a special dog wash for a $5.00 donation. All proceeds directly benefit the Madison Police Department’s K9 Unit. Phone 264-9292 for information.
The Insurgent Radio Kiosk welcomes your commentaries on subjects of interest to the WORT listening community. Commentaries are limited to two minutes. If you’d like to do a Kiosk commentary, visit wortfm.org/kioskcommentary.
The Kiosk is available online at wortfm.org/kiosk.
This has been the Insurgent Radio Kiosk heard weekdays at 5:00, 6:30 and 9:00 a.m. and at 2:00 p.m. I’m Greg Geboski. Submit announcements at least ten days in advance of the event at wortfm.org/kiosk/announcements.