Love a vet today!
Thank you to Marion County's 62,000 veterans
County's 62,000 veterans— many of whom still carry the
scars of battle long after leaving the warzone. We owe them the decency of
being aware of their community and its various challenges from the long-term effects
of Agent Orange exposure to the physically depleting weight of Gulf War illness,
nightmares of war horror or unquenchable rage associated with post-traumatic
stress disorder.We can support
them by contributing our time, talents and treasure to groups serving homeless,
incarcerated or remediated vets such as the Hoosier Veterans Assistance Foundation
Veterans Assistance Foundation. State and federal prisons held an estimated
140,000 veterans in 2004. Vets account for about one-eighth of the U.S.
population and one-fifth of its homeless population. Vets "leave no man behind."
Neither should we.
Cutting Gulf War soldiers' health care
Vietnam veterans finally caught a break when the U.S.
government agreed to ongoing medical care for the lifelong effects of service.
Gulf War vets, who continue to suffer and die from acute Gulf War illness or post-traumatic stress disorder
stress disorder, face a law that will end their medical care
and other disability benefits. The cutoff date is currently set for Dec. 31,
2011. Vet support groups are asking people to lobby their U.S. senators and
representatives for an act of Congress. An active lobby continues to ask
Congress to fund continuing research on the myriad mysteries of the insidious Gulf War illness.
of our sons, daughters, fathers, brothers, and sisters are sick of a toxic environment
created in the fight during the Gulf War," one letter reads. "This
was an unknown risk of war, but we would like you to support veterans and
families in finding treatment and a cure for their illnesses." Vets fought
for justice (even if the true meaning of the term is bent by political gamesmanship.)
Let's give them theirs.
Environmental watchdogs @ work
intersections of businesses and the environment can be treacherous places where
the real-world, lower human tendencies such as greed and arrogance manifest
themselves in the form of air, water and soil degradation
water and soil degradation. Our great democracy allows some
exploration of the decisions we make in service to the all-mighty dollar. This
week pork producers and foes of large-scale agriculture will watch as the
Indiana Water Pollution Control Board updates the state's rules governing the largest confined feeding facilities
rules governing the largest confined feeding facilities. We'll
see if new rules translate to less nutrient-rich runoff, which chokes streams and
causes fish kill incidents. ... Now if we can just wean our meat farmers off
the sub-therapeutic use of antibiotics. É We can't downplay the importance of
water resource conservation. The current picture of key polluted rivers and lakes in Indiana,
according to an Environmental Law& Policy Center study released Nov. 7, demonstrates how "weak state policies and lax
enforcement have allowed the stateÕs rivers and lakes to become fouled by algae
blooms, toxins, sedimentation and dangerous pathogens."