Photo: Circe Denyer
I am an environmental attorney and I was for Bernie. I also support the Occupy Movement and wrote about that movement from an environmental perspective in an essay called Occupy The Environment that was included in the first book published about the Occupy Movement, The 99%: How The Occupy Wall Street Movement is Changing America.
And I am here to tell you that voting for Jill Stein of the Green Party this November is a very bad idea if you care about the environment, or any other progressive issues for that matter.
We have a two party system in America. Yes, it would be nice if we had a viable Green Party, but that is not happening in the next 100 days. A vote for a candidate who CAN NOT WIN is a throw away vote that we can not afford, especially for the environment. Here is Bernie Sanders Delegate and former NAACP president Ben Jealous speaking about why he is voting for Hillary and urging others to do the same and NOT to vote for Jill Stein, even though he likes her policies.
“We can’t deny the facts of the past. George W. Bush got into the White House because Al Gore lost by about 900 votes in Florida. Ralph Nader got 90,000. The reports, the studies that went back and looked at those voters said 60 percent of them would have gone for Gore if Nader wasn’t on the ballot there.” (Ben Jealous, Interview on Democracy Now)
The progressive movement is growing stronger and we will continue to make great impact on the policies of this nation if we don’t surrender our country to Donald Trump who would be devastating not just for his term of office, but well into the future since he will name at least one Supreme Court Justice and probably more. If you want Citizen United to be overthrown, don’t throw your vote away, and let’s make sure Trump doesn’t get to put his pro-corporate, anti-environmental justice in our Supreme Court.
Donald Trump’s horrific vision of America includes getting rid of pesky regulations that interfere with corporate growth, things like environmental protections (he’s not a climate change believer). Though Hillary is not a perfect environmental leader by far, she has accepted a Democratic Platform that includes the important ideas that we Sanders supporters stressed on environmental issues. That is how politics works. We organize and we influence leaders. Jill Stein is not a leader. She is an organizer, and does a great job at that. Hillary is a real candidate that can win and carry out the promise of the platform.
Again, Ben Jealous: “The reality is that we have a responsibility, when our Earth is in such peril, to not be kind of flying kites and investing in fantasies, but to actually do the hard work of organizing. And the real hard work, we all know, is actually in the streets once you get somebody in office. We don’t elect presidents to make change happen for us. We elect politicians to make it easier for our movements to make change happen. But you’ve got to be willing to build a movement. Frankly, I only hear about the Green Party when somebody’s running for president, in most places. I never hear about it winning in Congress. I never hear about winning in the Senate. I wish–I wish I did. But the reality is that the Green Party in Europe oftentimes joins with people who are center-leftists or even, you know, folks that we don’t typically agree with, because they have a different system, and, quite frankly, they’re much more strategic and much more effective at actually pulling their country to the left. That’s what Bernie Sanders and our progressive movement inside of the Democratic Party is doing.”
On Earth Day 175 nations, including America, signed historic climate agreement in Paris. If we let Trump take control of America, can you imagine any progress toward working with other nations to solve the biggest threat to our survival, climate change? He says he will abolish the treaty. Hillary is, at the very least, a continuation of Obama’s polices. And Bernie Sanders has moved the party in a much more progressive direction.
It’s up to us progressive environmentalists to work for that vision to become real, with Bernie Sanders and all the other progressives we will elect, and not to vote for a candidate who can not defeat a real environmental villain, Donald Trump. The stakes could not be higher. Our whole world is watching and we have the responsibility not to throw our planet into the flames of hatred and climate disaster.