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Winds of change

October 10, 2018
Lehigh Acres Citizen

"Speak up! Be a disrupter. Some people think that's a bad thing, but it's not. It wakes people up. Make those phone calls.

"What I don't want you to do is to sit here and wait for them to come and tell you. I want you to start sending them the message. They need to hear from you. If you are having health problems, call the health department. Call them again, not one of you, not 10 of you, not 20 of you, but 50, 60, 70, 80, 90 of you. I don't care if they get stressed out. I don't care if their phone is ringing off the hook. Call them, call them, call them, call them, call them, until they respond. They want to make their job to ignore you, make it your job that they hear you."

Environmental activist Erin Brockovich issued a powerful call to action for Floridans Wednesday.

And she added one more: Take your water quality concerns to the ballot box.

We agree -emphatically agree - it's time for voters across the state to insist that our local, state and federal representatives prioritize water quality issues by cleaning up the mess they created through subsidies, de-regulation and the misappropriation of funds voters specifically earmarked to restore and revitalize South Florida watersheds from Lake Okeechobee to the Everglades.

This is not a "party" issue - the environmental and financial devastation wrought by the Environmental Hurricane of 2018 has electrified a nerve along the entire political spectrum.

If substantive change is going to happen - finally happen - it needs to be now while the memory of thousands upon thousands of fish carcasses cast upon our beaches is still seared in everyone's memory.

Now, while images of dead sea turtles, dead porpoises, dead manatees and even a dead whale shark are burned upon our hearts.

Now, while our neighbors are forced to food banks and mobile distribution sites, human faces of the $40 million economic impact suffered in just two months on Sanibel and Fort Myers Beach alone.

The first "drop" of mail ballots for the Nov. 6 General Election begins today across Lee County.

We urge voters to research the records and positions of those asking for our vote, be they incumbents or be they newcomers, be they Republicans or be they Democrats.

Follow the money for no, the big bucks offered by lobbyists representing special interests are not limited to any particular party nor any particular espoused-for-public- consumption school of thought.

Do your homework, eschew the rhetoric and prioritize water solutions this election.

Politics aside, Ms. Brockovich is correct: Change begins with us.

Vote accordingly.

Or brace yourself for the next environmental storm that is sure to come.

-Citizen editorial



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