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Lead Ain't Dead: Poisoned Water


Water is a necessity to life and for 25% of Americans,

it can kill them in the long run.

We're talking arsenic and nitrate water.

3,000 areas have poisoning rates that

horrendously exceed Flint, Michigan (link).

This is an alarming panorama of modern America

where amenities themselves are a gamble.

Water worries are their highest since 2001-D.C.'s water disaster.

Life and death in Flint, Michigan are too close together.

How did such a "winning" system fail in protecting

the most vulnerable citizens: children?

 There is poison in the blood.

Where can we find an answer to this?

Below is PBS' documentary Poisoned Water, a

further analysis on the nationwide water crisis.


Poisoned Water paints a devastating reality.

(D-PA) Senator Matt Cartwright shaming Governor Rick Snyder for his corrupt role in Flint

Neglect by leadership and the EPA has formed a vicious cycle:

poverty, pollution, low investment, health defects and

creation of inescapable ghettoes with high lead levels.

278 zip codes have double the likelihood of this.

1,100 communities had lead tests four times Flint's.

And in 4 million households, children are greatly affected.

5% of Flint's children test for high lead levels.

2015 NRDC map of 5,363 water systems in violation of EPA standards

A related report released that only 908 cases were

pursued by the EPA, out of 8,000 (Washington Post).

NRDC's Threats on Tap indicates that

80,000 violations hover over

drinking water systems in each state.

Underreporting's a given, so that number is considerably higher.

This sick system has succeeded in

toxifying nature's foundations,

and the people who need them.

 Fracking, industry production, outdated water

systems and weak environmental regulation

have created a nightmare scenario.

Dozens of American cities, states and towns face a

particularly rough predicament like Flint.



Water advocates have been poisoned themselves,

thrust into a conflict against governments, even threatened.

But they won't give up the mission.

Autumn Peltier is an Anishinaabe water protector/

(AKA Chief Water Commissioner)

that you have seen in Generation Activism,

and standing against Canadian imperialism!

Read her words from 2019's Eshekenijig Conference.

"Our ancestors fought so hard to keep our languages,

our ways of life and oral teachings alive.

They saw ahead and they suffered for us.

I often think that one of my great, great-grandparents prayed for me.

They prayed for our way of life and our future...

The water is a precious resource that sustains all life.

I have been hearing all over that we only have 12

years left because of the impacts of climate change.

Then I hear we have 20 years left if we don’t do anything now.

I think of what kind of future do we even have?" (x)

She argues for reality's return, and

pivot away from poisonous forces.

"I recently visited Attawapiskat.

Our people in the north are living in Third World conditions.

Those children live in a world where a

bottle of water is $18 and for

us here a bottle is $2-$3.

I still can’t imagine living that way.

In the south we are so fortunate to be

able to drink from our taps,

and our water is fresh and clean."

Watch Autumn Peltier's full speech on YouTube.

The Unist'ot'en Camp also agrees fiercely

on water access as a basic human right.

RCMP is suppressing all opposition to the Coastal GasLink

pipeline which illegally crosses ancestral land.

Police brutality and Indigenous intimidation continue here.

Wet'suwet'en protesters are fighting

for their lives, and the future's as well.

But each protector knows: Wet'suwet'en solidarity

will win this anti-nature war or else.

"The Unist’ot’en (C’ihlts’ehkhyu/Big Frog Clan)

are the original Wet’suwet’en Yintah Wewat Zenli

distinct to the lands of the Wet’suwet’en.

Over time in Wet’suwet’en History,

the other clans developed and were included

throughout Wet’suwet’en Territories... (History)

The Deterritorialization of our people,

Indian Residential Schools, 60’s Scoop,

and continuously reduced social programs

on the Indian Reservations have forced

our people to resort to being 100% dependent

on fragile and threatened salmon runs.

This is one of the biggest reasons why we must

vigorously fight for our lands and waterways.

This is one of the biggest reasons why we will win." (Unist'ot'en)

Dr. Karla Tait insightfully said of the raids,

"a year later that Covid-19, legal battles, invasion,

and community trauma have challenged us

and still the fight for the clean water of the

Wid’zin Kwah and the future of

the Healing Centre continues.

A lot of it is about remembering how connected we are,

and that what we’re connected to is strong

enough to hold us through anything.” (One Year)



2,000 communities in Amazonia, the Amazon

River Basin live alongside one other today at least.

They co-exist in such an ancient, enormous forest.

Our respect should come naturally.

Brazil has nine Amazon provinces

whose land defenders are COIAB

(A Coordenação das Organizações

Indígenas da Amazônia Brasileira

since 1989, and APIB est. 2005

as part of their council) plus some we

know that don't want to be named. Bad-ass.

440,000 people's home is in a 110-MILLION

hectare area where isolation can be detrimental,

or key to consistent survival (COIAB).

Meet awesome leaders like Sonia Bone

Guajajara, judicial advocate Eloy Terena,

Deputy Joênia Wapichana in Roraima

(tribe has the same name),

Artemisa Xakriaba and thousands more.

Luta pela Vida Mobilization 2021 has amassed 6,000

forest protectors for Indigenous rights now (8/24).

"Nesse imenso território, vivem ao menos

180 povos indígenas distintos, além

de grupos considerados “isolados”.

Em toda a Amazônia Legal, existem

cerca de 114 registros da presença

desses indígenas que optaram por viver

de forma livre e autônoma, sem

contato com a sociedade envolvente.

Porém, a maior floresta tropical do planeta,

e nossas terras indígenas, estão cada vez mais

ameaçadas pelo desmatamento e pela

cobiça de madeireiros, garimpeiros, pecuaristas

e investidores do agronegócio.

Muitas regiões são de difícil acesso,

e as políticas públicas raramente chegam

até as populações mais afastadas."

Translation for the Anglo readers:

"In this immense territory, at least 180 distinct

indigenous peoples live, as well as groups considered "isolated".

Throughout the Legal Amazon, there are about

114 records of the presence of these indigenous

people who chose to live freely and autonomously,

without contact with the surrounding society.

However, the largest rainforest on the planet and

our indigenous lands are increasingly threatened by

deforestation and the greed of loggers,

prospectors, ranchers and agribusiness investors.

Many regions are difficult to access, and public policies

rarely reach even the most remote populations." (Reverso)

Artemisa Xakriaba comes from Mina Gerais,

southeastern Brazil. She is turning 20 soon:

already a representative in Global Alliance

of Territorial Communities and the one who

hand-delivered an open letter to U.S. Congress (APIB).

Act now, amplify Amazonia's voices.

Amarun Mesa and Sani Isla (Kichwa) community

stay by the northern Napo River's median (Ecuador).

Helena Gualinga, Sarayaku youth and incredible light in dark times. Credit: Alli Hanes

Pueblo de Sarayaku in central/eastern Ecuador

are a seven-community village (Kalikali,

Kushillu Urku y Puma and more),

with Waorani neighbors

who are a day's boat ride away!

"En esta parte del país, no existe carretera.

Para llegar a Sarayaku se debe ir por vía fluvial o aérea."

Travel is by air or fluvial here.

2020 alone bore the worst oil spills in

15 years: two major ones across Ecuador.

Petrobell and Petroecuador's extraction/

refinery processes create hydrocarbon,

which contains heavy metals...toxic waste.

672,000+ gallons entered the Napo River,

April 2020 to completely disrupt local life.

Rio Shiripuno faced the same danger less than seven months later.

Greed barred food and water access for weeks.

Canoes are invaluable to each river-bound individual.

So much was lost, but not forever.

President Marlon Vargas of CONFENIAE

confronted European and South American-

aligned business for their failure to save lives!

He outlined an alternative course so

Ecuadorian Amazon communities can survive.

"1. Ecuador enforces the free, prior and informed consent

(FPIC)and implements it in current and future concessions.

2. The government of Ecuador commits to the

non-expansion of the oil frontier and

takes a wind-down of existing wells.

3. The government of Ecuador aligns with the goals of the

Paris Agreement and respects the vision of our peoples

by making the Amazon, a priority ecosystem for

the country and the planet, to prevent an environmental collapse."

(November 13th, 2020)


Amariyanna Copeny, "Little Miss Flint" is not

just part of Generation Activism or a figurehead.

She quite effectively pressures her local

government on water protection.

When Mari penned a letter to Obama,

he agreed on $100 million for clean water authorization.

The water crisis is decades in the making

though, and Mari did not waste time.

Flint needed more help than one charity case or two.

She steadily guided townspeople to rallies and

government meetings so they could take a stand.

Never mind the fact a 13-year-old

can be a better leader than current ones.

You are looking at a proud Flint Youth Justice League member,

the People's Climate March Youth Ambassador, Women's

March alumnae and Turtle Island's brighter possibility.

"My generation will fix this mess of a government.

Watch us."

Marc Edwards is a significant professor

 and expert on plumbing corrosion.

He came to a horrifying realization on 2003

Washington, D.C.'s drinking water.

Marc Edwards

His research focused on premature pipe corrosion

around the metropolitan area.

The news defied any expectations.

Chloramine treatment increased lead levels to 83 times the acceptable limit.

The EPA Lead and Copper Rule

sets the standard for 15 parts per

billion (ppb), and any level above this

prompts immediate decontamination.

Edwards diluted samples to 10% potency from each visited house.

Meters still calculated 1,250 ppb (Time)!

Marc testified to the House of Representatives in 2010.

"The lead levels in DC drinking water from 2001-2004

were unprecedented in modern history.

Some samples exceeded “hazardous waste” criteria (>5,000 ppb).

Debris on the Potomac River, near the Kennedy Center. Quite a dirty capital.

And the contaminated water was present in tens

of thousands of DC buildings including homes,

apartments, offices, schools, daycare facilities

and even the US Congress." (Flint Water Study)

Acidity in the Potomac increased with lead-based solder alone (x).

The CDC claimed there were no risks from chloramine treatment.

So they did not fix the issue until 2004.

Additional treatment as a "fix" has its drawbacks.

Although chloramine may no longer dissolve in

water mains, chemical testing and

treatments are rife with problems.

 Edwards also discovered the fatal levels of lead in Flint.

He combats water poisoning wherever the need arises.

Edwards makes his assessment of D.C.'s political

intent known, after EPA cut ties and

WASA diverted research funding.

 "To the extent that my experiences with individuals

in the CDC Lead Poisoning Prevention

Branch and the CDC Office of Science are

any indication, there is a culture

of scientific corruption." (Flint Water Study)

Marsha Coleman-Adebayo is a tenacious water

protector, and former EPA policy analyst

during the Gore-Mbeki Commission.

Marc Edwards' assessment was chilling and all too real.

Coleman-Adebayo exposed ties between

business and environmental hazards here,

but abroad as well (South Africa).

Vanadium was poisoning land under American contracts.

Money literally toxified the motherland,

and something had to be done.

First there were courageous calls for

administrator Browner outside her office.

Then backlash started and became vicious.

So Coleman-Adebayo advocated for a particular lawsuit

to protect her rights, and other whistleblowers.

We realize an ominous truth in the U.S. House

Federal Employee Antidiscrimination

and Retaliation Act hearing...

The EPA affected employees' health

on concerning levels, and terminated

several victims as a professional threat.

This was unacceptable.

"We can no longer live in fear of compromising

our health, from the stress created by

working in a cruel work environment.

We can no longer live in fear of retaliation

and out-of-control managers who discriminate

without consequences and face

no accountability for their actions.

We can no longer live in fear of being

retaliated against when we courageously

expose fraud,waste, abuse and

mismanagement in the government.

We can no longer live in fear."

(House Session, pg. 44, 5-9-01)

The Act passed in 2002, and Marsha embodies

true freedom beyond so-called law.


This Anishinaabe-led organization in Minnesota's

Great Lakes Region resists during the "Seventh Fire":

a prophetic, capitalist climate carnage.

They combine grassroots action in person,

digital art and awareness with multimedia.

"This is a time when our people will have two roads

ahead of us—one miikina, or path, which

is well-worn but scorched—and

another path which is green.

It will be our choice upon which path to embark.

That is where we are."

Winona LaDuke and the Indigo Girls founded

Honor the Earth in 1993, no less relevant.

"We are the only Native organization that

provides both financial support and organizing

support to Native environmental initiatives.

This model is based on strategic analysis of what

is needed to forge change in Indian country, and it

is based deep in our communities, histories,

 and long-term struggles to protect the earth."

(Full Mission Statement)

Their latest actions involve Line 3 interventions

via leadership cultivation, political engagement,

the MN Public Utilities Commission, and much more.

We cannot quantify in words, the importance in

Anishinaabe wisdom through Honor the Earth.

"We are creating spaces for Water Protectors to

gather and learn about our lands, our traditions,

and models for a new sustainable future."

(Welcome Water Protectors)


Baltimore's, Cleveland's, East Chicago's, Philadelphia's,

Saint Louis' and Washington D.C.'s

lower-income, majority Black neighborhoods

are dying from generational exposure.

Baltimore's environmental pollution affects from

40% to 50% of residents over a decade.

Indigenous territories from the Wet'suwet'en to

the Sioux (Standing Rock), and Suriname

have faced eco-warfare in waves.


Health consequences can be irreversible for

lead and other metals or toxins,

though some manage to overcome this.

They include lags in mental and physical growth.

High blood pressure and kidney problems manifest into adulthood.

Big Sean's track 'Bigger Than Me' is about his home city, Detroit, and Flint.

Cognitive gaps and heightened aggression are persistent side effects.

Crime can be traced from the blood.

What's in it? Look deeper to see.

Freddie Gray's death was a major factor in 2015's Baltimore uprising.

He passed in police custody after prior run-ins with law enforcement.

Gray's childhood is pivotal: Baltimore's Sandtown-

Winchester district, a lead paint hotspot.

He lived there since two years old, and suffered

developmental issues that never went away.

Follow events throughout his life, and it becomes clear that

destiny is determined by five digits—where we live,

who we identify to be beyond nationality.

This is not an uncommon story.


Let's petition multiple officials in health and resource authority

 for their share of water systems donations.

They are responsible for the loopholes in regulation.

Contaminated water will take billions to replace if

each state wants taxpayers to live healthily.

No more poisoned water, no lead in the blood.

Extinguish the destructive fires across Earth with our power.

The Trump administration, governmental bodies and global citizens

must stand firmly on climate and ecological policy.

This is our chance, and only planet we have.

Emissions, natural gas/oil extraction, industry waste and

our future have to drive national action and discourse on health.

Will the EPA stand up for nature now?

Will the RCMP leave water protectors alone?

What is Turtle Island's fate? We decide.

It shouldn't have to be the super-rich's backyard for them to care.

We can resist for the good of everyone.

It will be difficult. But don't worry.

Metal is found in plenty of beneficial places,

like mountains and music, even our bodies.

Balance is everything.

Purify the water so we can live, and for generations after us.


Water Crises Like Flint's Will Continue
Until the EPA Is Held Accountable
The Guardian, 2-09-21)

Climate Carnage

Generation Activism

Indigenous Organizations

- Gidimt'en Yintah Access

- Indigenous Environmental Network


- Protect Native Elders

Natural Contract

Operation Safe Drinking Water

Poison in the Blood (Report)

Revolutionary Reassurance