Michael Moore, perhaps Flint, MI's most famous son, has written an open letter to people who are heartsick at the thought of a whole generation of mostly poor, mostly black children being given permanent brain damage through lead poisoning, thanks to the deliberate indifference of the state's Republican administration and the greedy people who elected them.
It will take much more than bottled water to help Flint. With 102,000 residents and an average US consumption of 50 gallons of water/day, the city requires 20.4 million 16 oz bottles of water every day to live the normal lives that virtually every other American expects.
But clean drinking water will only prevent more people from suffering permanent, irreversible brain damage: it will do nothing to remediate the permanent, multi-generational tragedy visited upon the residents of Flint. Michigan governor Rick Snyder, who replaced the elected governments of the state's poor, black cities and replaced them with unaccountable crony "administrators" with the power to unilaterally make urban policy owns this tragedy. As Moore writes, "There is not a terrorist organization on Earth that has yet to figure out how to poison 100,000 people every day for two years – and get away with it."
Moore says that people who want to help Flint -- and all the other Flints-in-waiting -- should take five steps:
1. Demand the removal and arrest of Rick Snyder, the Governor of Michigan
2. Make the State of Michigan pay for the disaster that the State of Michigan created
3. The Federal Government must then be placed in charge
4. Evacuate any and all Flint residents who want to leave now
5. For those who choose to stay in Flint, FEMA must create a temporary water system in each home
Moore points out that Snyder's slash-and-burn approach to civic spending has left the state with about $1.2B in surplus -- a sum that matches the estimate of what "it will cost to replace the water infrastructure and care for the thousands of poisoned children throughout their growing years."
Demand the removal and arrest of Rick Snyder, the Governor of Michigan. When the police have an "active shooter" situation in a building, they must first stop the shooter before they can bring aid to the victims. The perp who allowed the poisoning to continue once he knew something was wrong -- and his minions who cooked the evidence so the public and the feds wouldn't find out – must be removed from office ASAP. Whether it's via resignation, recall or prosecution, this must happen now because he is still refusing to take the aggressive and immediate action needed. His office, as recently as this past Thursday, was claiming the EPA had no legal authority to tell him what to do. You know the EPA -- that federal agency every Republican politician wants eliminated? Governor Snyder is not going to obey the law. He has covered up the crime, and I submit he has committed an act of voluntary or involuntary manslaughter. Last month I posted a meme of me holding a pair of handcuffs with the hashtag #ArrestGovSnyder:
It went viral, so I posted a petition (link) to U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch asking her to arrest the Governor – and asking President Obama to send help to Flint immediately. As each day brought a new revelation of the Governor's corruption or incompetence, and with Rachel Maddow on a nightly tear, the momentum built. MoveOn.org and Democracy For America joined me in circulating our petition. We are now on our way to having a half-million signatures! Then Bernie Sanders became the first candidate to call for the Governor’s removal. That same day, President Obama issued his first emergency order for Flint. The next night, Hillary Clinton fiercely called out the racist actions of the Governor.
You want to help? Sign the petition – and get everyone you know to sign it. Now. Another half-million signatures could become the tipping point we need. All eyes are on Flint.
Don't Send Bottled Water [Michael Moore]