I’m a messy eater. And burritos aren’t the cleanest food on the planet, especially if the taqueria’s engineering team didn’t do their homework when picking materials and designing the wrap to contain the rising PSI as I place my chompers around its supple flesh and bite. So when I get down to grubbing, I frequently spill. And when it happens, it’s possible I’ve ruined a perfectly good pair of pants. This is, of course, par for the course when you live off burrito fuel.
But rather than dwell on federal regulations that could’ve made deep sea oil mining safer, or about how terrible BP is while filling up a thirsty tank at another oil company with an equally appalling environmental record, we need to be honest with ourselves. We have a place in this. We demanded cheap gas. We demanded our government make automobile travel more affordable–at least on the surface. We were unwilling to make sacrifices to our behaviors or to our pocketbooks to affect the change that needs to be made for a clean energy future. And for whatt? So our gas prices can remain artificially low as our taxes bankroll one of the most environmentally damaging and inefficient forms of transportation on the planet?
For an instant, America is awake to its problem. We may have a hard time realizing it all comes down to each of us as individuals, but dammit, at least right now we’re all forced to look at the grim truth. As happens with every addict, we’ve hit something close to rock bottom. So now is the time. We’ve got to sit this country down on the couch and tell her we love her but that she’s got to get help.
MoveOn is floating a petition out there to Congress and the White House asking them to accelerate the push to end our addiction to oil. I encourage you sign it. Out here in SF, there are a few events happening to grab the attention of oil-addicted drivers. But beyond the minute-long investment of throwing your name on a digital petition or whooping it up with a bunch of hippie San Franciscans, I ask you to get even more vocal in your support of the things that can get us to put down the crack pump. Let’s tell America how to get help. Even if she doesn’t want to listen.