Tag Archives: drinking water

Water is a Human Right


By Gordon Davis
The recent low water levels of Worcester’s water reservoirs brought back negative memories from the early 1960s when the east coast of the United States experienced drought-like conditions.  

The west coast of the United States has recently experienced something similar. A lot of people on the east coast are just too young to feel anxiety about low reservoirs.

Yesterday, the Worcester reservoirs were about 89 percent full. They should be 100 percent full and overflowing at this time of the year.

Snowmelt and April showers have been historically the main source of water in the spring.

The reservoirs are then drawn down by use over the summer and fall. The low levels of Worcester’s reservoirs today could mean water rationing later in the year.

I cannot say that this is due to Global Warming, but it is one of my fears.

When I was growing up in the 1950s in the streets of Philadelphia, there was abundant water. Philadelphia got most of its water from the Delaware and Schuylkill rivers. Because there was plenty of water, the City turned on the fire hydrants in the summer. We kids played in the flooded streets!

As the water basins for these rivers dried up, the salt from the Atlantic Ocean moved farther upstream. If this salt line had hit the water processing plants, Philadelphia would have been out of water. There was some anger at New York City, which took more and more water from the head waters of the Delaware River. Each day then, I would buy the newspaper for my Dad, and before giving it to him I would sneak a peek at the map of the salt line.  Today, get the paper and look to see how full the reservoirs are.

Most people and organizations in the world believe that water is a human right.  

Public water supply is almost the very definition of common good.

The chair of Nestle, Peter Brabeck-Letmathe, does not see water as a common good. He sees water as a commodity and a means to make a profit. He certainly puts a chill in my spine.

I suppose I should not be surprised. I have seen vendors sell water to very thirsty people on a hot day marching for justice for $4 a little bottle. I have seen municipalities prohibit the capture of rain water from a private house roof.

The City of Worcester encourages people to capture roof water and it provides, for a price, rain barrels. The rain barrels can be ordered through the City of Worcester website.

It is only rarely I drink bottled water, mostly when travelling. I think water in plastic bottles to be energy-inefficient and the plastic to be a hazard for some living things.

The City of Worcester monitors its water supply and lets us know of hazards. Unlike the City, water bottling companies take water from some unknown source and they never says much about the water quality.

My Worcester water bill came today.  I am always annoyed that it is so high. I suppose this is incentive to get that rain barrow and remodel with a more efficient water use device.

Every so often images of water shortages, Global Warming, water hoarding and wars for water give me pause. 

From filmmaker Michael Moore … on his hometown’s lead-ridden drinking water

I wrote a letter calling for the arrest of Michigan Governor Rick Snyder for poisoning the people of Flint, Michigan …

Dear Governor Snyder:

Thanks to you, sir, and the premeditated actions of your administrators, you have effectively poisoned, not just some, but apparently ALL of the children in my hometown of Flint, Michigan.

And for that, you have to go to jail.

To poison all the children in an historic American city is no small feat. Even international terrorist organizations haven’t figured out yet how to do something on a magnitude like this.

But you did. Your staff and others knew that the water in the Flint River was poison — but you decided that taking over the city and “cutting costs” to “balance the budget” was more important than the people’s health (not to mention their democratic rights to elect their own leaders).

So you cut off the clean, fresh glacial lake water of Lake Huron that the citizens of Flint (including myself) had been drinking for decades and, instead, made them drink water from the industrial cesspool we call the Flint River — a body of “water” where toxins from a dozen General Motors and DuPont factories have been dumped for over a hundred years.

And then you decided to put a chemical in this water to “clean” it — which only ended up stripping the lead off of Flint’s aging water pipes, placing that lead in the water and sending it straight into people’s taps.

Your callous — and reckless (btw, “reckless” doesn’t get you a pass; a reckless driver who kills a child, still goes to jail) — decision to do this has now, as revealed by the city’s top medical facility, caused “irreversible brain damage” in Flint’s children, not to mention other bodily damage to all of Flint’s adults.

Here’s how bad it is: Even GM won’t let the auto parts they use in building cars touch the Flint water because that water “corrodes” them.

This is a company that won’t even fix an ignition switch after they’ve discovered it’s already killed dozens of people. THAT’s how bad the situation is. Even GM thinks you’re the devil.

Maybe you don’t understand the science behind this. Lead, in water — now, bear with me, this involves a science lesson and you belong to the anti-science party, the one that believes there’s not a climate problem and that Adam and Eve rode on dinosaurs 6,000 years ago. Lead is toxic to the human body. There’s no way to fully eliminate it once it’s in your system, and children are the most damaged by it.

By taking away the city’s clean drinking water in order to “cut costs,” and then switching the city’s water supply to Flint River water, you have allowed massively unsafe levels of pollutants and lead into the water that travels in to everyone’s home.

Every Flint resident is trapped by this environmental nightmare which you, Governor, have created.

Like any real criminal, when you were confronted with the truth (by the EPA and other leading water experts across America), you denied what you did.

Even worse, you decided to mock your accusers and their findings. As I said, I know you don’t like to believe in a lot of science (after all, you used to run Gateway Computers, and that, really, is all anyone needs to know about you), but this time the science has caught up with you — and this time, I hope, it’s going to convict you.

The facts are all there, Mr. Snyder. Every agency involved in this scheme reported directly to you. The children of Flint didn’t have a choice as to whether or not they were going to get to drink clean water. But soon it will be your turn to not have that choice about which water you’ll be drinking. Because by this time next year, if there is an ounce of justice left in this land, the water you’ll be drinking will be served to you from a tap inside Jackson Prison.

I am calling upon my fellow Michiganders — and seekers of justice everywhere — to petition U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch, asking her to arrest you for corruption and assault (i.e., the physical assault you committed against the children of Flint when you knowingly poisoned them).

Yesterday, the federal prosecutor in Flint, after many of us had called for months for this action, finally opened up an investigation into the matter. Now we need your arrest, prosecution and conviction.

And who will be cheering on that day when you are fitted with a bright orange jumpsuit? The poor and minority communities of Michigan who’ve endured your dictatorial firing of their mayors and school boards so you could place your business friends in charge of their mostly-black cities. They know you never would have done this to a wealthy white suburb.

I welcome all to look at the appalling facts of this case … .

I’m asking everyone who agrees with me to sign on to this petition and call for your arrest, Governor Snyder. You are not allowed to run amok in my hometown like you have done. The children whom you have poisoned have to endure a life of pain and lower IQ’s from your actions. You have destroyed a generation of children — and for that, you must pay.

It is time for you to go to prison. Out of mercy, I’ll ask that you have in your cell your own personal Gateway computer.

Michael Moore
Flint native
Michigan resident and voter

P.S. For everyone wanting to sign on to this petition calling for the IMMEDIATE resignation of Governor Snyder AND for the FBI to arrest him, please sign the petition petition here: http://michaelmoore.com/ArrestGovSnyder