Note to the DNC: It is Indeed Also the Environment, “Stupid”!

by on July 13th, 2005

I apparently owe the New Democrat Network an apology of sorts. The Ringmaster recently lambasted the NDN for low balling the environment by not featuring it prominently on their site along with other hot button issues, and instead including it as almost an afterthought listed dead last on their agenda page. Imagine my embarrassment when, having just visited the DNC’s for the first time since the recent face lift, I find that the environment isn’t on our party’s listed agenda at all! Pardon me Howard, but WHAT IS UP WITH THAT?!?

At the Risk of stating the obvious once again, to ignore the environment as an important issue “is not only ignoring what is arguably the single most critical issue of our time, but also ignores one of the central pillars of the Democratic Party platform (at least it used to be, that is) and of progressive politics. Our good mama earth deserves equal if not top billing with these other hot button issues”. Not to mention, “Clean air, clean water, and a livable planet are everyone’s business and I think polling data indicates that this view is held across a broad political spectrum”. And finally ” the economy, homeland security, the military and ALL ethnic group issues are arguably trumped by sustainability in that all these things depend upon a healthy, functional biosphere for their very existence”.

I think it’s important to note here that a favorite punching bag of the “Democratic wing”, the DLC, does include Energy & Environment under the heading of Issues on their home page. Bravo! Whether or not you agree with their devolutionary approach to this issue, they at least chose to recognize the environment as being one. Dean is fond of repeating his “Republican lite” line. Well, guess what Howard, choosing to omit environmental issues from the DNC agenda is not Republican lite, it’s Republican, Period.

So, apologies NDN, even though I believe it was a fair criticism given your stated mission to revamp the Dem message for the 21st century. Environmental issues do indeed need to be emphasized in that message. But the Ringmaster can’t be too hard on a centrist Dem think tank when the official Party site doesn’t even do as well. Shame on them.

We wired progressives are rather familiar with online action alerts. Well here’s one for ya. Email the DNC today and ask them, no DEMAND that they get with the program, the progressive program, and add the environment as an issue given the prominence it both needs and deserves. Do so because all of us and all our children still need and deserve that.

Kit Robinson