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8:33 a.m. - Saturday, Jun. 05, 2010
MsLeslie... not part of the solution
I�m looking at the pictures on the news. Now I�m seeing them on the internet. I shouldn�t look. I�ve seen it all before. It just makes me so sad, and it makes me so angry.

I lived in Valdez when the Exxon Valdez ran aground. I was on the beach when the first sea otter coated in oil was discovered. I lived a few yards away from the rescue center where hundreds of otters later were washed, fed tons of crab, and eventually released back into the wild. I also saw the birds there, oiled. Some of them were caught, cleaned, and saved, but what I remember mostly, was just piles and piles of dead birds. The images were ghastly and are ghastly still. Just Google �valdez oil birds�.

Now I am seeing the first images of birds oiled in the Gulf of Mexico. These are just the beginning and I don�t know how I�m going to cope with the horrors I know are coming. I�m seeing these magnificent pelicans, standing at water�s edge. Just standing there with a kind of confused majesty. I�m seeing too, the little gooey tarballs with eyes; just blinking when the oily surf washes over them again and again; patiently waiting for death.

I am so angry.

I am so sad

I prefer to take my emotions one at a time, but this thing is bigger than my anger. I�m angry and sad., but even that isn�t enough.

When I look at the birds, it makes me realize that they are just a part of the price I pay for every gallon of gasoline I pour into my old Dodge Ram. Every mile I drive brings death and destruction to something, somewhere; And each time I turn the key in the ignition, I am making a decision that all this death is acceptable. I forget about that when I can�t see what I�ve done; A kind of denial, I guess. And now, even though I�ve seen it twice in a close and personal way, I keep on making the same decision. I keep on driving because I see no real alternative. Driving is what we do here. It just is,

And so I�m angry at big oil for the cynicism and disregard and angry at the government for the greed and incompetence.

I�m sad for the death of a land and the unnecessary suffering of untold numbers of living things.

And I�m so ashamed that I am a part of all this.

Happy Thoughts, Deep Breaths

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