It doesn't just wash off like they want you to believe. It shows up with this special lighting and doesn't change even with brisk scrubbing. The only time it seems to go away is as it is absorbed into the skin. Translation: Not a good situation at all. Think of all the people who are swimming in the waters even with the visible tar balls and stained sand. They think they are just washing off the toxic substances, but in truth over the days it is seeping into their blood stream.
POWERFUL. I love these 2 amazing women. They are 2 of the strongest voices who are speaking the truth to us of the devastating BP Oil Spill. Skip the mainstream news today and listen to their true accounts instead.
"My Thoughts on the BP Gulf Oil Spill
Like everyone, I am very concerned over the BP oil spill and cry at night over the impact to our ocean, fish, wildlife, marshes, and am worried about what the future now holds for the area or for us all for that matter. This will affect the world. I just returned from Florida, Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana and had a chance to talk with some of those affected. All the finger pointing and blaming isnt going to change a thing for those harmed. It will change, we hope, the political climate and steer the outcome of off shore drilling differently but for those affected, finger pointing and the blame game does nothing but further delay any solution. The horse has left the barn. SO now what do we do?
I think we all see the forest through the trees and know the magnitude of the disaster, which much of it has yet to be seen and we will watch and live the fall-out for decades. I hope that BP can just tell the truth now and that we can begin the daunting task of cleaning up and restoration, which will takes years if ever. We can begin to calculate the untold loss to fisherman, business and tourism and wait for the fall out of health impacts from the dispersants that have been used which no one seems to know its harm, so why use it at all? Why add insult to injury? We cant use our people or oceans or wildlife as some sort of experiment. While I don't have the answers and I don't know who does I do know this: The Gulf has been hit by many disasters and it is the WILL of the people who live there that will restore the area just as they have done before. They are a resilient group of folks.
I am very concerned about the Oil Dispersant "Corexit" that is being used because some reports are coming in about people getting very sick. If you know anything about these chemicals or have been exposed, I would like to hear from you..."
We thought it was bad just having all the oil and tar balls and dead sea life come in on the beach, but now since Tropical Storm Lee we have oil in the ditches on land! This is in residential areas where kids are playing and animals are running around through the ditches not realizing they are walking through oil. We have headaches, we are living in an oil saturated land! BP is doing nothing and the local news won't touch this either. They want this to stay buried and be forgotten. Please pass this on and share our message! We need help here.
All the photos in this video are from beaches along Louisiana and Mississippi and were taken from March 2011 to September 2011. Did you know this is happening, or did you believe what BP wants you to believe through false advertising that ALL IS GOOD? It is heartbreaking and we live here every day and have to see it. BP has not taken care of their mistake and now the sea creatures are having to pay through the sacrifice of their lives. Please Pass this on! Something needs to be done. Share this with everyone you know! We the people of Louisiana and Mississippi thank you for listening and watching.
Watch all the way to the end! At the end you see what this has done to human lives...
The oil still continues to come in on the beaches in the Gulf Coast. Here is an amazing report and huge source of pictures and videos from a group called On Wings of Care. They are flying out and checking out the truth of the Gulf Coast scene and this is nothing that is being said in the mainstream media. But oh wow check this website out:
From On Wings of Care:
To summarize: We found significant amounts of oil in globule form still at the Deepwater Horizon (DH) site and at the Taylor Energy site, and we saw miles-long surface rainbow sheens from two different leaking platforms between DH and the Chandeleur Islands. Eight shrimp boats with their nets in the water were within one mile of these two leaking platforms. In the 'blue waters' out toward the DH site we were puzzled by some long, wide, unnatural-looking dark-green colored stripes. Finally, dark brownish-red subsurface plumes like what we had previously documented around Breton Island (Mar 2011) spanned miles in width and length, right up to the coastlines, beginning where the Mississippi River Gulf Outlet ("MR-GO") meets the Gulf south to Breton Sound. With all of that, we were ecstatic also to see three sperm whales, one leatherback turtle, four whale sharks, tuna, redfish, bottlenose dolphin, and cownose rays.
Some things puzzle us: We have seen substantial oil almost every time we've flown in the Gulf since March of this year, and yet we hear about very little of it in the media. Is that because no one else has been flying over the Gulf to see what's really going on? Is it just coincidence that all of these other offshore platforms have suddenly been leaking since the Deepwater Horizon (DH) explosion in April 2010? Or has the Gulf been suffering chronically from this kind of leakage? How much of the oil we've been seeing this year has anything to do with the DH explosion? A large fraction of the samples taken from these observed phenomena have contained oil whose 'fingerprint' matches that from the DH site. That doesn't mean that everything we're seeing comes from the DH incident; but it does seem safe to conclude that 1) oil from the DH explosion has made it quite a ways from the original site; and 2) there are many other oil leaks present in the Gulf!
In the matter of committment to the free right of the peoples of our nation to clean air, water and soil; and in concern for the human rights violation currently being suffered upon by the people of the Gulf Coast, I humbly call upon the good people of this nation and Earth to arise in complaint.
There is no need to again write a list of the injustices of these times. Those with clear conscience, already are aware of the issues of the day, those who would take the time from their life to read this, are already feeling the call of concern for the people and ecosystem of the Gulf Coast - and probably of the Earth, herself.
For today I will ask you to not merely ponder the actualities of the predicament but to be moved to action concerning the future of us. For it is US, it is our land - our trees, our waters, our air, our children - who have and will suffer the brunt of our denial, apathy and lack of concrete procedure.
Dually note in your consideration of action, that:
It is not for a lack of evidence that the people and ecosystem of the GC have not had justice. - The infinite evidences are alive and breathing documents found all over the web, media, and more importantly, in the waters, soils and bodies of those who live from, and for, the Gulf of Mexico.
It is not due to a deficit of resource of either BP, or the federal or state governments, that our concerns have not fully been perceived and righteously managed - Claims of such are illusionary. Any such government that has not funds or availability to protect and serve the righteous claim of health and environment to its citizens, it can be argued, does not deserve to stand anyway.
It is not for an insufficience of patience on our side for a true recompense for our workers, ecosystem, wildlife and residents - Nearly sixteen months have passed, and we have yet to see a true accounting of the damage, let alone a narrative as to the solution.
No, it is the lack of POLITICAL WILL that keeps us from not only recourse, but from the nourishment of justice.
And it is without doubt that if change is to come, at any rate of effectiveness, it will not be behind the feebleness of the voting curtain, through petition of misconceived powers, or by a continuous cacophony of angry words scrolling across an illuminated screen.
It will most assuredly be fought in the same way that all errors are eradicated, in the same way that all freedoms are discerned, in the same way that all evolutions are transitioned - through irrepressible hardships and an unending commitment to the greater good - ground level.
It does not matter how small the beginning. It must begin.
Please review the below options for your activation for all of our survival:
Operation Steve Colbert - http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=165028723568298
Note: polite, handwritten letters to the show are in great need, the address can be found here.
Also please go here, http://forums.colbertnation.com/?page=ForumView&forum_id=63
to post a comment - in this case, numbers are everything.
Tar Sand Action - http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=209183039127043
Note: On August 24 the people affected from the GC will join in solidarity with those of this action, if you would like to attend, and live on the coast, please contact me immediately.
NVDA at GCERT - http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=141475579272388
Note: On Tuesday, August 30, in Biloxi, silent, yet resilient, action at the GCERT meeting.
Civil Disobedience 2011 Style - http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=268979023116762 Note: More info to come on this event, it will be historical in it's evolution of other relevant efficacious movements.
Feel free to join the conversation for actions in the Gulf here http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Oil-Is-Still-Here-and-So-Are-We/267702813245266?ref=ts and for the call for clean air, water and soil as a human right across the nation here http://www.facebook.com/pages/Gulf-Change/229360920411954
Have no fear. Those who are meant to hear us, will.
And God Bless.
by Kerry Kennedy
More than a year after a private company operating in public waters retched 170 million gallons of crude and 2 million gallons of toxic dispersants into the Gulf of Mexico, creating one of the world's largest environmental catastrophes, we still lack thorough and reliable statistics on the BP oil disaster's impact on the health of residents.
Along with Stephen Bradberry, who is the executive director of the New Orleans-based Alliance Institute and the recipient of the 2005 RFK Human Rights Award, I recently joined a delegation traveling across the Gulf Coast region, speaking with fishermen, oystermen, shrimpers, restaurant workers and neighbors about the illnesses they have suffered in the wake of this calamity.
I couldn't help but think of the trip that my father, Robert Kennedy, made to the Mississippi Delta in 1967. He was horrified by the poverty, the children whose bellies were "swollen with hunger." He believed we had a duty, as a nation, to relieve their suffering and soothe their pain.
Today, the children and grandchildren of those very same families continue to suffer from systemic governmental neglect, the debilitating heritage of communities marginalized by skin color, religion, education level, income or access to power. It is long past time for federal action.
In Biloxi, Miss., a fisherman named Kwan told us he was on a cleanup crew for BP, and he and his fellow fishermen have had rashes across their bodies, which itch until they bleed, ever since. In that city, the health care facility is so over-booked, it takes up to three months for a doctor's appointment.
Catfish Miller, another fisherman, also worked on the cleanup crew for BP. He was denied gloves, a respirator, eyewear or any form of protective gear. He suffered searing headaches, ear infections and sores in his nose and throat for months on end. He said no doctor he went to would tie his ailments to toxic poisoning.
We heard dozens of people across the region talk about similar health problems and obstacles to care, including long travel distances to health facilities and the need for cash outlay among those in cash-strapped communities. There are many other reasons.
Local doctors generally lack access to the expertise, training and equipment to diagnose toxic poisoning. They don't want to be called as expert witnesses in lawsuits with BP. They are afraid of malpractice suits and will not treat patients unless they have specialty training, adding to the disincentives to diagnose. And, with most patients self-employed and uninsured, few can afford the expensive tests and medicines necessary to show causation and obtain proper care.
Last year, President Obama pledged that Gulf residents would be "made whole." To honor that pledge, Congress must ensure that health care is adequate, affordable, proximate and available; that health care workers are trained to diagnose, track and treat toxic poisoning; and that the people of the Gulf are treated with respect, no matter what their background.
There is a solution. The late Sen. Edward M. Kennedy signed the first federal law providing community health care centers to people in need. Today, 23 million Americans depend on those centers for care. Under legislation passed last year, the centers would expand to include 40 million Americans, many of them along the Gulf Coast.
If Republicans in Congress don't make good on their threat to decimate the progress that's already been made, the people of the Gulf might stand a chance.
First responders to the 9/11 tragedy did not have to prove causation in order to get treatment, they only had to show they were in the vicinity of the terrorist attack. Similarly, the 150,000-strong cleanup crew who sacrificed themselves, and their families and neighbors who live along the Gulf Coast, should not have to prove that their symptoms are caused by BP's catastrophe, only that they were there.
It's time for us to provide the families of the Gulf Coast with the health care they deserve.
Kerry Kennedy is president of the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice & Human Rights.
by Cherri Foytlin
The day before yesterday, on August 4, 2011, one year after the President of our United States stood on national television and said that 75% of the oil that had spewed into our Gulf was gone, I was booked into the New Orleans Parish Police lock-up with the charge of Criminal Trespassing.
The day before, I had been called by the Louisiana State Police Department to come to a meeting with them to discuss the Non-violent Direct Action Protest that myself and a united group consisting of environmentalists, community organizers, fishermen and clean-up workers, had organized in front of the British Petroleum offices, which are on the 13th and 14th floor of 1250 Poydras in NOLA.
At that meeting, I was told that we were allowed on the sidewalk only. That there would be plain clothed officers among us, and that if we crossed a certain line, which runs from the building to the parking lot, we would be arrested. The detectives, very nicely, drew us a map to explain the exact whereabouts of that line.
When we got to the event, which at the beginning had nearly 100 in attendance, I made the announcement that I was going to cross that line. And that I was doing this in protest of the so many lines that BP has crossed, in my mind, concerning the cleaning up of their mess, the spraying of toxic chemicals in our water, the murder of 11 of our energy providers, the disrespect and economical damage to our fishermen and residents, and the denial of and lack of response to health issues and claims since April 20 of last year.
So, I intentionally crossed that invisible line and took their tar balls back to them - a box full that had been picked up our beaches that day, (with no clean-up workers in sight, I might add). At least 15 other people chose to go with me, to complete this task.
As we approached the front door, we were met immediately by a representative of the company, the building and a security guard. Together they refused us any access to the building, citing that all BP workers had been dismissed for the day - a fact I knew to be untrue, because the state police had told me at our previous meeting that although most would be sent home at 4:30 that day, some would be available until 5:30, (at the time that they had told us this, they were trying to facilitate a meeting between us and BP - to which we had said was only an option it Feinberg and Zimmer was in attendance, and to which BP had refused to consider).
Being unable to enter the building, we dropped the tar balls on the sidewalk (in plastic), and sat down directly in front of the doors, where others came to join us.
And that was where we stayed.
In the mean time, kind people from within our group brought us waters and other refreshments in order to make our stay more comfortable. So, naturally, it was not very long before I personally had to urinate.
A very respectful gentleman from the state police had come forward to negotiate, just as he had the day before at the meeting in the SBI offices. I asked him, jokingly, if he thought they would just let me in to pee. He said no and that “They were freaking out in there.”, but pointed out that there were portable toilets just beyond the fence in a nearby hotel construction site.
After a few minutes, I felt it calm enough at that moment - since all BP representatives, building security and police personnel were discussing the issue inside, (excluding the one member of the state police that, at that time, was sitting with us), I could go use the restroom quickly, and come back.
So, I did. I jumped the fence and used the facilities. Upon my return jump, I realized that the BP reps in the building had seen me go and went running to find me, perhaps thinking I had looked for an alternative route into the building.
And that they had taped me jumping the fence and notified the nearby construction site mangers of my trespassing. We believe that they had hoped that the other owners would have had me arrested for trespassing and kept the BP name out of the incident. You see, arresting and charging people for bringing to light their negligence and lack of response sort of blows that whole “making it right” image.
But, the people next door had no interest in arresting me, or anyone else. We have more allies than they, or even we, know - you see?
I then joined the others in sitting, which we continued for over all around 3 hours until a little after 8:00 pm, which is when - after negotiating tirelessly, and being very respectful with us all day, the New Orleans Police Department and the Louisiana State Police gave us one more chance to end the protest and go home before arrests were made.
At that final refusal, NOLA PD, quietly came forth and arrested the 3 of us, who had remained seated.
Truth is, I knew that I personally was going to get arrested if I stayed sitting there, I knew that. And this was a decision that had not been made lightly on my part.
Over the last year and nearly a half I have studied past movements that have worked on different levels. And thanks to those who have come before us, we have a general formula for affecting change.
According to Dr. King, mainly from his letters while he, himself, was sitting in an Alabama jail, he said that the progression includes the following:
- To find out if an injustice exists - without doubt we, the people of the Gulf, have been dealt with very unjustly with regards to this corporation and our governments handling of this event, as well as others across the Gulf.
- To negotiate - we, the residents, fishermen, clean-up workers, tourism industry workers, oil workers, community organizers, ect, have negotiated on the local, state and federal levels with the HHS, the CDC, the NOAA, the EPA, the GCERT, the CEQ, the DEQ, the Oil Spill Commission, the Administration, and BP itself for nearly 16 months - to little or no avail.
- Dr. King’s next step was to “self-purify” - each person must take this step alone. Personally, I had first interpreted this step as the ending of bad habits, such as social drinking. But on the walk I realized that he was talking about preparing your mind against egotistical illusions, self-doubt and self-pity.
- The last step is action. And in the successful civil rights movement, as well as the Eastern Indian movement for independence, that meant non-violent action and civil disobedience taken against the oppressors in order to advance the cause of, and bring to light the call for, justice and liberty.
Our being arrested, was just the first step of that last phase.
Now, while I was sitting there I had a good friend of mine, who is very sick from the toxins still in his system and our environment, say to me, “Cherri, it is not worth getting arrested.”. He was begging me not to take that final step. He did that, because he love me, and he did not wish to see me suffer, I understand that - and it warms my heart. But my response to him was, “My friend, you are so worth getting arrested for”.
You see that is what we all must understand. You, my friend, are worth it. Our ecosystem is worth it, our kids are worth it, our future is worth it.. We must understand the value of what we have and be determined in protection of that. We must take up responsibility to, and for, each other now, in these times. Because, we are all worth it.
As we sat there, we repeatedly looked across the crowd and saw testament to that notion; such as, the poster my 9-year-old had made of her depiction of Earth with pollution dotting it, and the eyes of the people who were sick from chemical poisoning and yet had still come out to take a stand, calloused hands of a fishermen, community organizers who we have all seen at events from Texas, to Florida, to D.C. - demanding, begging sometimes, to be heard on behalf of the communities and ecosystem that they love. And we saw grandmothers and grandfathers, daddies and mommies, and sisters and brothers, all united in the simple humanitarian right of clean air and water.
One person in particular, Kimberly Wolf, a warrior woman who I have had the honor of getting to know early on in this fight, and who also has terminal cancer, yet got out of her bed and joined us for as long as she could - strengthened our souls. She is the picture of strength and love in all of this - and in seeing her, I have never been so moved by an example of commitment and perseverance.
That is the epitome of what this event, and our arrest, was about. That there is hope, we have allegiance to each other, that the loss of one does not and will not end the journey of the whole for truth, justice and recompense of the human rights violations that are taking place in our homeland.
There are so many to thank for the success of the day. I would especially like to recognize Kyle Nugent and Noah Learned, who I had not met prior and yet went all the way on behalf of our people and coast. The people who helped in organizational duties, too many to name here - but in particular Karen S, Ada, Devin, Josh, Mary-Margaret, Anne, Elizabeth, Robert - there are so many. And including the people who were at the event(s) of last week, and/or are still working on this issue, or others like it.. you are all my heroes.
I would also like to make clear, that the New Orleans Police Department and the Louisiana State Police Department were very kind in their treatment of us before, during and after our arrest. The first thing I was told after getting in the car was, “Why didn’t you just go home, Miss Cherri? None of us wanted to arrest you.”
They also took the handcuffs off as soon as we arrived at the station, and made sure we were as comfortable as possible under the circumstances.
So, there you have it.
I want you all to know, that we will not stop. We will not stop until our fishermen, our workers, our families, our wildlife, our waters, our region - are made whole again. Because when you love something, when you really do, you will never be silenced in protecting and fighting for it.
There will be further opportunities for those caring souls across the nation to stand with us for justice. Be ready.
You see, THAT is the greatest weapon in our tool box, that is what will win this and so many other battles we have been called to participate in, it’s our LOVE that will carry the day.
On August 4 we took our first stand. Courage, my friends, this is just a beginning.
P.S. - BP have a response to the event, which is further proof that we made a wave, I cannot find the link at the moment but will update when I can. They said something like, “we are still here too“. It would be nice if a response was made by you to the author.. And to every journalist, and person, who needs to learn more about the truth of what is happening in America’s Gulf Coast.
Here is the link mentioned in the above paragraph ttp://bit.ly/pFCwVc h
KERRY KENNEDY TO LEAD DELEGATION TO GULF COAST TO ASSESS HEALTHCARE CRISIS SINCE BP DRILLING DISASTER
Kerry Kennedy, president of the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights, will lead a delegation to the Gulf Coast region July 24 to 26, 2011, to assess the scope of the emerging healthcare crisis in the wake of the BP drilling disaster. The delegation will be hosted by Gulf Coast organizer Stephen Bradberry, the 2005 Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Award Laureate and Executive Director of the New Orleans-based Alliance Institute.
Coastal communities continue to experience adverse health consequences resulting from chemical exposure associated with the April 2010 BP oil disaster. The delegation will speak with constituents about the physical and mental health impacts, challenges to accessing medical care, and low-cost initiatives to provide treatment to these communities. The delegation will tour Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana.
On July 26, the delegation will visit a soon-to-be established site for medical treatment in Jean Lafitte, Louisiana, the result of a collaboration by the Jefferson Community Health Care Centers, the Alliance Institute, the Louisiana Bayoukeeper, and Mayor Timothy Kerner. The new site, to be established in honor of Robert Kennedy, is a low-cost model to provide medical treatment to coastal communities with little or no access to healthcare services.
The delegation will conclude with a briefing and reception in Washington, DC, on July 27. This event will provide a unique opportunity to receive current and first-hand information on the lack of access to healthcare among groups in the Gulf impacted by the disaster (minorities, rural, low-income, elderly, as well as workers from relevant industries).
The RFK Center first responded to the BP oil rig explosion with a delegation in June 2010 to assess the immediate impact in the Gulf Coast region. Since then, the RFK Center has continued to partner with Stephen Bradberry to promote civic works programs and address the long-term human impact of the BP drilling disaster.