Conduct Rigorous Inspections of BP Refineries

Originally published on September 8, 2014, at ForceChange.com

Target: U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid

Goal: Impose harsher penalties and in-depth inspections of BP facilities to prevent disasters

An exploding compressor ignited a fire at BP’s largest U.S. refinery recently, leaving one worker injured. The company’s Whiting Refinery in Indiana has been the center of controversy and numerous incidents of incompetence. Known for causing the Gulf of Mexico oil spill in 2010, BP has a notorious history of taking shortcuts, neglecting safety regulations, and harming the environment. To prevent another disaster and any further loss of life, the U.S. government must impose harsher regulations against highly detrimental corporations with proven histories of inanity like BP.

Shaking local homes and injuring a worker, the compressor’s explosion set Whiting Refinery on fire and took hours to extinguish the flames. The injured worker was taken to a hospital to receive treatment. Since the fire took place at night, only a few workers were exposed to the flames. Had the explosion occurred during the dayshift, hundreds of workers could have been injured or killed.

Continue reading

Protect Monarch Butterflies from Extinction

Originally published on September 3, 2014, at ForceChange.com

Target: U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid

Goal: Provide protection to monarch butterflies under the Endangered Species Act

With their population in rapid decline, monarch butterflies have lost over 165 million acres of habitat. Herbicides, pesticides, the loss of the milkweed plant, and illegal logging in Mexico have contributed to the massive reduction in monarch butterfly populations. The U.S. government needs to protect the monarch butterflies under the Endangered Species Act before it is too late to save them.

Butterfly monarch populations have declined by 90 percent in less than twenty years. During the 1990s, roughly one billion monarch butterflies migrated to fir forests in the winter. Scientists estimate that only 33 million monarch butterflies remain today.

Continue reading

Stop Cruel Primate Testing and Experiments

Originally published on August 6, 2014, at ForceChange.com

Target: U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid

Goal: Ban the horrific methods used to test chimpanzees and other primates

Because chimpanzees are 99% genetically compatible to humans, scientists in the United States use them as experiments in traumatic and extremely invasive tests. Many of the chimps are mistreated physically and psychologically in order to compare their reactions to ours, but the majority of tested primates end up traumatized, debilitated, or dead. Do not allow brutal lab tests to continue against innocent chimps in America.

Since scientists are not allowed to perform experiments on living human brains, they capture primates in the wild and conduct invasive procedures on their brains. By cutting open the skull and applying electric currents to different parts of the brain, scientists have induced various physical reactions and emotional responses from primates. Unnecessary brain surgery on chimps is equivalent to animal cruelty and must be stopped immediately.

Continue reading

Stop Sexual Assault in the Military

Originally published on August 1, 2014, at ForceChange.com

Target: U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid

Goal: Reform the military’s broken system of punishing sexual assault victims for reporting heinous crimes

Sexual assault victims within the military are speaking out against the abusive treatment they have received immediately after reporting their rape. Many of their attackers receive light sentences or honorable discharges without a criminal record of the offense. Victims also accuse superior officers of interfering with investigations in order to lower their sexual assault statistics.

The military’s chain of command has failed to implement congressional and statutory mandates designed to reduce sexual assault. After reporting the assault, many victims receive verbal abuse and further unwanted sexual advances. Their attackers are often convicted for adultery instead of rape.

Continue reading