By Roxana Soto, MCAF
I’ve never been one to care too much about celebrations like Mother’s Day. I feel they are way too commercialized and too much effort is put into material gifts. Plus, my dad — your abuelito — used to say that Mother’s Day is everyday! But I guess you’re too young to understand any of that.
You’re also still too young to understand the perilous state of our planet. But, I’m not. I’ve called Earth home much longer than you, and I’m embarrassed to admit that I haven’t done much to try to make it a cleaner place for both of you…until now.
I am part of a group that wants to make sure parents do everything in their power to protect you, our beloved children, from toxins in both the air we breath and the water we drink. Moms Clean Air Force was specifically created to fight against the weakening of the Clean Air Act which is under attack by politicians in Congress. We’re fighting for clean air for our children…you.
At stake are the new EPA’s Mercury and Air Toxic Standards which will prevent 17,000 premature deaths and 120,000 childhood asthma cases every year. Mercury is a powerful neurotoxin, mercury that can harm fetuses and the developing brains of young children. In fact, mercury pollution affects more than 400,000 newborns every year. Why anyone would fail to see the importance of the EPA’s new standards and the need for us to support them is preposterous, to say the least.
I know you have no idea what I’m talking about, but one day you will. And I want to make sure you know that, as the one who gave you life, I did everything I could to try to make this planeta a better place to live for both you and future generations.
On this Mother’s Day, the best gift I could possibly get is for all mamis and papis to heed the wise advice of this ancient Native American proverb:
“Treat the earth well: it was not given to you by your parents, it was loaned to you by your children.”
We owe you y la madre tierra that much!