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Rick Edmund
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Rick Edmund

Rick Edmund is a United Methodist church pastor in Maryland. He resides on Smith Island, which has been impacted by rising sea-level and in 2007 testified before the U.S. Senate Committee on the Environment about climate change and the Chesapeake Bay.

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NIMBY?

I am not involved on a professional level in politics or climate change, but it seems to me that political consequences rise to the top of any legislation that Congress wants to consider. It's not unlike the oil pouring into the Gulf of Mexico that is only millimeters thick but hides the clear water below the surface. Both immigration and climate change legislation are important and to hold hostage one or both seems irresponsible. I'm not just thinking of Sen. Lindsey Graham. While I haven't heard his side of the tale, it's likely there is fault on the Democratic side as well, and I'm sure the South Carolina Senator has rational justification for what he has done. Senators (and it seems like more maneuvering is done by the Senate) need to move beyond the next election and think about the next generation and beyond. Their delay, if we are really serious about getting to the facts of climate change, will impact Americans and all people of the world for maybe 100 years. Apparently the EPA needs 5-6 weeks to study the climate bill, which most Senators have not seen, and when that is done, perhaps we'll see some progress.

No one wants their view of nature tarnished by a giant wind turbine or an oil well, and no legislator wants their political turf stepped on by members of the other party. But don't all of us have to give something up if we are to be responsible citizens of this great land (and world)? No one in Congress should comment on President Obama's poll numbers while the public's view of the legislative branch is much lower than his. It is for reasons such as Graham's pullout of his climate bill support and for political considerations of Democrats, Republicans, and Independents alike which fuels such a low opinion of those who represent us in this great body of Congress.

In the third day of the Los Angeles riots following the acquittal verdict of his beating by police, Rodney King spoke to the public, "Please, can we all get along here? We all can get along. I mean, we're all stuck here for a while. Let's try to work it out." While these are completely different situations, most problems can be worked out if the participants put their priorities in order and work toward a common goal: doing what is best for all involved.

By Rick Edmund  |  April 30, 2010; 11:04 AM ET Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
Previous: Ignore the bumps in the road | Next: So we "scramble" on

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