Sometimes you spend years preparing for change, then when it arrives you are too tired to get moving.
I’m trying not to let this happen to me.
For inexplicable reasons, the horrific shootings at Newtown and Superstorm Sandy have shifted something in the American soul. After all these years of advocating for action, there is finally forward movement on climate change and sane gun regulations. Though I for one am weary and tired, I want to encourage you (and myself) to do what we can to meet this moment.
1. On greenhouse gases and climate change–If you’ve never spoken out about climate change, do it now. Write to your Congressional representatives and ecclesial leaders asking them for strong, clear leadership to reverse of global warming and mitigate its associated social disruptions. President Obama raised it in his inaugural address. There seems to be movement in Washington to address it–finally. While in most cases the best solutions to a problem are those closest to the ground, this is not the case with climate change and climate disruption. It will only be adequately addressed with federal leadership. So we’ve got to push. Tell Barack Obama that you support him to lead in the fight against climate change, beginning with the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline.
2. On sane gun laws–After the shootings at Sandy Hook, Americans rose up to demand two things: universal background checks and a ban on assault weapons. President Obama’s 23 planned executive actions on weaponry is moving us forward on universal background checks.
The second piece, a ban on assault weapons, has now been introduced to Congress by Sen. Dianne Feinstein. I’ve read the whole bill. It’s excellent legislation. It deals directly with many of the loopholes in the previous assault weapons ban that sundowned in 2004. Now it is our job to build support for it. Write to your Congressional representatives (here’s the link to the Brady Campaign support letter) and ecclesial leaders asking them for strong, clear, unequivocal support for Sen. Feinstein’s “Assault Weapons Ban of 2013.”
As we move toward Ash Wednesday and Lent, I hope that part of our commitment can be to take meaningful action in these two areas at least … remembering when the Lord said to Moses “Stop whining to me! Tell the people to get moving!”