interdependent web of existence

tears of the damned

numbers and numbers and numbers

representing individuals


a man with a plan

a woman wanting to make bread

a child who loves rain

we watch numbers without names

names have too much value

when we hear names

the strings of attachment to humanity

pull too hard, decisions begin forming

actions feel necessary


200,000 people

one man who wanted to build a house

one young man in love with one young woman

one 70 year old man who just wanted to sleep without bombs

one 3 year old girl who never read

one 8 year old girl who loved the stars

one human being essential to the future


200,000 human beings with names and dreams and goals essential to the future

i wail for the loss of humanity

i weep for the transference of names to numbers

i cry for the percentages

i yearn desperate for what we have lost

i burn inside for the time

humanity overthrows the prejudice, power, division

i will keep the names of those who lived

those who have to face it again and again

etched in my soul

for the dead no longer pray

they no longer cry tears of the damned





earthquakes and riverbeds

one day i heard

a prophet on the street-corner

talking of legacy

he was gnarled and twisted

he was missing a front tooth

and the other hung by a string

flapping like a flag in rhythm

he was a white fellow

with skin that looked painful

worn and exposed to the elements too long

he had on an old army jacket

and was missing his left arm

his beard had become a hiding place

for crumbs and leaves and sticky things

i think he was one of the people

i should have been scared of

i wasn’t afraid

i was, however, intrigued

the gentleman was having a heated debate

and the other participant was invisible

the main topic of discussion

centered around

foot-prints made by him v foot-steps made by others

i missed half of the conversation

i never heard the argument mr. invisible made

but the guru said profound and exciting statements

his foot-prints were left in many different countries

he was following the foot-steps of great generals

his foot-prints moved borders

changed histories

rearranged families

the trail he blazed, he blazed well

he could make a mother fall to her knees

and beg and plead and barter

he could make the ground shake

men could bleed and scream

by his prescence

he had changed worlds

he had been a god

and those mothers, children, fathers

the people living near his path of flames

would pray to him, begging for mercy

lighting candles in his name

mr. invisible had been outwitted

and went to stir up another wasp nest

somewhere, anywhere else

the man who had become a god and returned as a man

looked at me

there were rivers flowing from his eyes

he asked if i had any change to spare

i gave him all the cash in my purse

he had just followed in the foot-steps of others

and fell from grace

more mountaintop removal coal mining issues brewing

app mts

fresh water spring in the appalachians after a mtr "fill"

fresh water spring in the appalachians after a mtr “fill”

from the facebook page of climate ground zero’s mike roselle:

What it does: This rider ( Division D, Title I, Section 115) restricts the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers from using funds to develop, adopt implement, administer, or enforce any change to regulations pertaining to the definitions of the terms “fill material” or “discharge of fill material” under the Clean Water Act.

Why it matters: A 2002 rulemaking by EPA and the Corps of Engineers altered the definition of “fill material” under the Clean Water Act to include waste disposal, clearing the way the way for industrial mining operations to turn our vital streams and rivers into industrial waste dumps called “valley fills.” This rider would lock in this loophole, allowing industry to keep dumping industrial waste in rivers and streams and polluting entire watersheds.

Under the Bush Administration, the definition of “fill material” in the Clean Water Act was changed to allow mountaintop mining operators the use of streams and rives as “fill” dumps for their toxic mining waste

A single valley fill can be as big as 250 million cubic yards

The recent Elk River chemical spill in West Virginia that has left hundreds of thousands without water has rightfully grabbed national attention. However, the people of Appalachia have suffered from water pollution caused by mountaintop removal coal mining for decades and rather than trying to help, Congress seeks to double down on giving Big Coal free reign to poison our communities with this appropriations rider

Mining waste contains toxic chemicals known to pose health risks to humans and aquatic animals. Continuing the practice of dumping this waste into our nation’s streams and rivers is dangerous and irresponsible.

EPA estimates that 120 miles per year of headwater streams are buried with the chemical-laden discharge as a result of surface mining operations under existing definitions of “fill.”

As of 2006, there were more than 6,600 valley fills spanning more than 91,000 square miles in West Virginia, Virginia, Kentucky, and Tennessee

Already more than 22% of all the rivers and streams in Southern West Virginia are impaired by mountaintop removal mining pollution.

A 2008 EPA study found evidence that mining activities have subtle to severe impacts on downstream aquatic life and the biological conditions of a stream. That study found that nine out of every 10 streams downstream from surface mining operations were impaired based on a genus-level assessment of aquatic life

Chemicals associated with MTR mining – the same chemicals in valley fills – have been shown to pose developmental and reproductive risks, including:
o Heritable gene mutations
o Mutations in fetal DNA
o Musculoskeletal, gastrointestinal, urogenital, and other birth defects.

Mountaintop removal mining has also been linked to serious health problems. Rates of mortality, lung cancer, and chronic heart, lung, and kidney disease are all significantly elevated in counties with mountaintop removal mining. The rate of birth defects is 26 percent higher.


January 14, 2014

From our good friends at Earthjustice…

Raviya Ismail, Earthjustice, (202) 745-5221;

Harmful MTR Policy Exacerbates Public Health China Crisis

Provision included in spending bill would threaten already imperiled

Washington, D.C. — Last night the House of Representatives filed a trillion-dollar spending bill that includes a provision that restricts the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers from using funds to change in any way whatsoever, regulations pertaining to the definitions of the terms “fill material” or “discharge of fill material” under the Clean Water Act. This locks in a 2002 rulemaking that allows corporate polluters to keep dumping industrial waste in rivers and streams and polluting entire watersheds.

The following statement is from Chris Espinosa, legislative representative for Earthjustice:

“We are appalled that Congress is bargaining peoples’ health through this give-away rider to polluters. This rider does nothing but give polluters free reign to continue poisoning Appalachia’s already-contaminated drinking water sources. More than 22 percent of all the rivers and streams in Southern West Virginia are impaired by mountaintop removal mining pollution and this policy rider will lock in the same destructive practice of using waters as waste dumps.

“We will continue to work with legislative leaders and the administration to address harmful pollution that results from valley fills and press for an end to mountaintop removal mining. The chemical spill in West Virginia – which left hundreds of thousands without water – only reminds us all how much everyone needs and deserves clean water. Congress must not cut off the federal government’s ability to protect people from clean water. It is a basic human right.”



Earthjustice is a non-profit public interest law organization dedicated to protecting the magnificent places, natural resources, and wildlife of this earth, and to defending the right of all people to a healthy environment.

Raviya Heera Ismail
Eastern Press Secretary
1625 Massachusetts Ave. NW Suite 702
Washington, DC 20036
T: 202-745-5221

Because the earth needs a good lawyer

please read:

please help spread the word, and add your voice to stop this rider!  this will allow mountaintop removal coal companies to have unlimited dumping privileges.  the current crisis in west virginia will only be the beginning of concentrated toxins in fresh water supplies.  as it stands right now these companies have been “filling”-let’s call it what it is: poisoning-streams and rivers of the appalachian region for years, and this rider will only increase the allowed amount of deadly chemical that result from mtr coal mining.

regardless of whether you live in the appalachian region or not, everyone is effected by these “cost effective methods” of coal collection.  water flows into water, seeps into vegetation, evaporates and is redistributed through rainfall into other areas….everyone is touched by the poisoning these companies are causing.  at present the amount of toxicity of fresh water streams is minimal in comparison to where we will be if these companies are allowed and fiscally encouraged  to pick up the pace in dumping these chemicals!

please regardless of where you reside, add you voice and help spread the news of this rider!  congress is being quite sneaky in attaching this to a spending bill, making it almost undetectable!  to help stop this rider from being law please help spread the word on your social media sites and by contacting local media-radio and television stations and/or print media such as newspapers and magazines.  some examples of twitter posts:

> > Twitter Hashtags
> > #StopMTRPoisoning
> >
> > #NoMoreToxicDumping
> >
> > Polluters get greenlight on cont’d toxic dumping thx to @RepHalRogers and #Congress. Tell Congress #NoMoreToxicDumping!
> >
> > Tell @HouseAppropsGOP and @SenateApprops to #StopMTRPoisoning and remove MTR valley fill rider from Approps bill #NoMoreToxicDumping
> >
> > Hey @RepHalRogers, @SenatorBarb, @HouseAppropsGOP, @SenateApprops, @AppropsDems – ever seen a 250 million cubic yard wall of toxic sludge? Remove MTR valley fill rider from Approps bill #NoMoreToxicDumping

for more information please contact or @

professional soldiers of revolution, a paycheck for a protest

professional soldiers of revolution, a paycheck for a protest


in about the year 2000 i started doing work for autism awareness and education.  i was invested bc, at that time, one of my sons (later all 3 would be diagnosed) had autism spectrum disorders.  when i started researching into what autism was there was a bare minimum of information and even less that was accurate.  understanding how to research was the key to my success and i realized that there are many many many people out in the real world that either have never been introduced to the research process or who are thoroughly exhausted and just can’t manage pulling the strength of complete comprehension together.  how could their children benefit from a diagnosis when the parents and caregivers are stuck in a world filled with words of science and dr speak?  how can you apply what you have been told when you don’t understand the language?  that seemed to me to be a huge flaw in the system.  those who desperately needed the information on an understandable and comprehensible level were the ones left out in the cold.   a dr being able to understand is absolutely irrelevant to the lives of a family watching a loved one suffer and struggle, a family barely holding on to sanity from lack of sleep, constant self denial, consistent struggles about food, chasing shoes that are thrown out of the windows of moving cars and screaming at cashiers in grocery stores bc they give you the stink-eye are those that need to understand what is happening, not the professionals.

i think it was about 2006 or 2007 when i first heard of autism speaks, the new improved voice in the battle AGAINST autism.  at the time they came out, i had no idea how harmful they would become, and i was happy to see that the word autism was getting some spotlight attention.  that ppl were investing in public education and it was/is necessary.  at that time the stats were 1 in 150 ppl had asd’s, now we have an astounding rate of 1 in 88.  so the autism struggle went from a grassroots org to a national org with a load of money to boot.  autism speaks has generous backers and quite the line up of celebrities to get their message across, but what they are missing is the ppl w autism.  where are the voices of ppl w autism in the stop autism campaign of autism speaks?  they aren’t there, bc autism speaks does not speak for most ppl w autism.  their campaigns of fear and hatefulness of a neurological difference is not only alienating but also villainizing those w autism spectrum disorders.  the platform of eradicating the neuroprocessing of the autistic is devastating and makes the autistic person feel they are not good enough in the way they think currently and since autism affects the entire brain and nervous system that controls the entire body, there is no part of them that is not autistic and being told that autism is bad is saying they are bad.  autism was now in the limelight and characterized as a baby stealing monster.

i saw this same thing happen with the lgbtqa movement.  there are professional groups that are set up to normalize queers.  instead of demanding the respect we deserve for you know being human beings, we must conform to the standard of “normal” set by a society of ppl who really don’t want us around.  we adopt the hetronormative values and mimic the way they live, talk, dress, walk bc this is the only way to get respect-to conform losing our identity and culture and history in the process.

this is happening in most movements-the vigor is lost in translation due to professional ppls having secret meetings and making compromises.  this happens in the black community, the hispanic community, the muslim movement, environmental movements, native americans and first nations movements.  we water it down, conforming into white culture bc our cultures cannot be accepted on their terms, we can have some sense of equality if we pretend to be wasp.

losing grassroots movements to nonprofit big corps is a compromise to justice.  it breeds complacency, it encourages segregation at the crossroads of intersectionality, it drowns out the voices of those who have been denied replacing them with calm soothing voices of professional narrators.  what group does a black muslim poor lesbian belong to?  which part of her identity does she consider the most underfire, what part is least important to the whole woman?

we are not making room for those who are in the fight!  there is no platform available for a poor man to scream from, for a woman of color to advocate from, for the prisoner to address the issues of incarceration.  the humanitarian efforts are commodities at market peddled by frat boys with dread locks wearing thousand dollar suits.  those who are starving or fighting for survival, those ppl who have been neglected by society are now neglected by those “taking on the good fight for their justice” and they should be thankful for the backwash flowing in their direction, watered down equality set aside for those that will adapt.  the iconic woman, the iconic black man, the iconic prisoner, the iconic native…this is dangerous, this is the stripping of culture and forcing a whitewash on humanity.  look they can do it, what are you bitching about?

i am confused and frustrated by the whole thing.  on one hand the issues are being brought to the table and ppl are being forced to look at it, on the other hand the watered down justice and silencing of communities is horrible.  i am happy we have the noam chomskys and gloria steinems of the world, thank you to political orgs for speaking for my uterus, but seeing the ppl grab justice by the throat, demanding repayment of debts bought off our backs, insisting we be heard over the voices paid by nonprofs is necessary to any true movement for radical equal rights long overdue.