Youngstown’s Community Bill of Rights has been defeated at the polls for the third time. The bill would have banned fracking in Youngstown. Each election has seen it get closer and closer to passing. The people who voted against it have been very vocal in comments in the Youngstown Vindicator’s online comment section and on local talk radio. They all bitch that the bill’s sponsors need to quit bringing this initiative up each election. These no voters feel there is money to be made fracking and by damn we should go after every penny. Profrackers have not been deterred by all of the earthquakes we have had and are willing to live with pollution for jobs. They want to know why the local activist for this bill can’t get over their sour grapes and be good losers. There is a very simple answer to that question. The answer is that no dollar amount can buy these activists. Their mission is to move aside all obstacles that will lessen the pains of the Earth on their children’s future. They are willing to put an endless amount of initiatives on the ballot to save this local piece of their child’s planet.
You can’t beat this kind of activist down as they have bottomless pockets on their hearts when it comes to protecting children. Being defeated time and time again just gives them more experience to become specialists at their activism. They refuse to be spectators in life and are the opposite of the lazy couch potatoes that take pot shots at them. These couch potatoes are cowards who hide behind anonymity on talk radio and comments to online newspapers. The local anti-fracking activists are liberators against social injustice for their children. They don’t fear the naysayers, they fear surrendering their children’s future. In the end you can’t beat activist like that because they’ve put their heart and soul into their cause. To them quit is a dirty four letter word.
Do people who vote against ideas that would make our kid’s futures better or safer even have a heart or soul? Most people would say it’s impossible to help all children worldwide. That does seem like a daunting task to get your head around. Truth is many people don’t even think about helping take care of the children right in their very community. Do you think people who vote against school levies spend one second thinking about helping the children in their school district? I know it means paying more money in taxes but other taxpayers paid for your education. Here in Vienna, Ohio we have the second oldest high school in Ohio. The building will celebrate its 100 years old birthday in 2015. The building was made originally to house 9th through 12th grade. It now has 7th through 12th grade because the school district closed their even older jr. high a few years ago. The high school building features classrooms with garbage cans to catch water from the leaky flat roof. The smell of rot from a building this age plus the odor of backed up sewers is a constant. There is also no way to regulate the heat on the third floor. This is not a safe environment and it is a waste of money to put any more funds into maintaining this building. A film was made to show the severity of the problem as well as several open houses for the community to see the issues first hand. A levy was put on the ballot just this week to build a new school. The levy was defeated by the school district’s voters. The voters decided if the kids are breathing any chemicals, lead paint or sewer fumes they should be taught to not take many deep breaths. I guess that lesson could be added to the curriculum
There has been talk that sometime in the future the levy for a new school for our district will probably be back on the ballot. That of course has some local citizens grumbling that those for the levy have sour grapes and are sore losers. The real losers of course are the students in our district. I can’t help but think of the way the students must have felt when they learned the levy for a new school failed. I know some elderly people were saying they voted against it because they are on a fixed income. I make far less on the job I’ve had for over the last dozen years than the previous job I had. That leaves me wishing I had one of those fixed incomes. These same people on fixed incomes are expecting the students to get a job and pay into Social Security to make sure these elderly can keep getting their monthly check. It really is a world where helping the next generation also benefits you. The wealthy in our community send their kids to boarding schools so they vote against the local school levies. You would think they’d want a good local school to protect their property values. Other people whose kids have already graduated from our local school don’t want to pay for other people’s kid’s education.
I’ve already been told by some in my community that I need to grin and bear the vote and not try to shame others who voted against a new school. When they voted against a new school they were sentencing our local school kids to an unsafe environment. As far as I’m concerned that is shameless behavior. Given that, can one really shame the shameless? Isn’t voting against safe schools and against protecting our area from turning into a fracking chemical wasteland really a form of child abuse?
I have said over and over that the highest goal we can have in life is to make the best world possible for our own children. I’d extend that to mean the best world possible for our valley’s children and all the world’s children. We should not be deterred by those who want to endanger our children. I try my hardest to be a man of peace but I will NOT pussyfoot around or play nice with people who put the world’s children in danger. I want to tell activist to hang on to their sour grapes. In the end with a lot of seeding and work those grapes will turn into a sweet nectar that will nourish our children’s future.
St. Vincent: “Cruel”
Local Musician: Teddy Pantelis
“We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented.”
― Elie Wiesel