Day: February 26, 2011

Rush Limbaugh, Michelle Obama, And Nutritional Standards

Rush Limbaugh, the much overweight and pill popping radio talk show host, has been on a rampage lately in criticizing First Lady Michelle Obama for advocating good nutritional habits. He has also criticized her figure, comparing her to a beauty contest contestant who would be at least 20 years younger!

He and other conservatives have stated that her advocacy is interfering with family control over their children, and pushing for government intervention through “food police”!

They also contend that Michelle Obama is a hypocrite, as hamburgers and fries were served at the White House Super Bowl Party, and ribs were consumed by her and her daughters on a skiing vacation in Vail, Colorado.

Why is it that if someone wishes to promote good habits among children, who in larger numbers than ever before are overweight and liable to have diabetes someday, is seen as engaged in a conspiracy? Why is it bad to advocate proper eating when so many parents do not realize the importance of that factor in the bringing up of their children? And why is it that an occasional straying from ideal food habits is not seen as perfectly normal, as long as it is occasional in nature?

It is preposterous that conservatives have to attack something like this, when a half century ago, John F. Kennedy could advocate physical fitness, and no one protested that it was interference by government.

Every First Lady takes on a cause, and this one for nutritional eating is something that in the long run will be applauded, no matter what Rush Limbaugh does to criticize it at this time in history! What pettiness and demagoguery on the part of someone who has no limit to his own hypocrisy! And yes, Rush, you NEED to lose weight, eat better, and stay away from your addiction to prescription medicine!

Death Of Russell Peterson: Transformation From DuPont Research Scientist To Environmental Champion!

The death of Russell Peterson, a major figure in the environmental movement after having worked with the DuPont Chemical Corporation as a research scientist for 26 years, deserves attention.

Peterson died a few days ago at age 94, and anyone concerned about the environment must applaud his transformation from a research scientist with a Ph.D. in chemistry who worked for the one of the most prominent corporations which helped to undermine the environment in the process of doing business, the DuPont Chemical Corporation, to a environmental leader who fought DuPont and the Shell Oil Company, among others, who resisted any intervention by government on their business and industrial practices.

A one term Governor of Delaware as a Republican, Peterson promoted protection of the state’s coastline from industrial development, including a Shell Oil Company refinery, and utilized a lapel button which declared “To Hell With Shell”!

This activity led to Peterson’s appointment by President Richard Nixon as chairman of the Council on Environmental Quality, which he kept under President Gerald Ford. Peterson worked to protect the ozone layer of the atmosphere, and the phaseout of freon, a DuPont product.

Peterson promoted the publication of environmental impact statements and drew our attention to the environment like few other people had been able to do.

Peterson became head of the National Audubon Society from 1979-1985 and fought the environmental decline under President Ronald Reagan. He reacted to Reagan’s statement that his society was trying to make the White House a “bird’s nest” by stating that the White House under Reagan was already a “cuckoo’s nest”!

Peterson fought not just for protection of wildlife, but also for population control measures, consideration of energy issues, dealing with the dangers of toxic chemicals, and promotion of films on the environment and adaptation of an environmental curriculum for elementary school students. He also became involved in the protection of birds, and concern about the biological threat presented by nuclear war.

Imagine this: here was a man who developed Dacron polyester fiber and nylon carpet yarn while working for DuPont, and yet he became a reform Governor, possibly the best Governor in Delaware history, and grew to appreciate that industry must be regulated in the public interest to save our environment.

So with his death, one of the greatest public figures on environmental issues has left us with a great legacy to pursue!