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Friday, March 24, 2023

A third act for me, you and the environment

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Lauren Steiner

Act One. As a  precocious child in the late 60s-70s, I was enthralled by the social change movements. In 1969, I asked to go to Woodstock. My mom replied, “You’re 11. You’re going to summer camp.” When I was 13, I attended the first Earth Day, which inspired me to write a poem called “Vote Yes on Proposition Life.” “Fly high with me my little white dove, Fly high with me today. Don’t fly too low, or you’ll turn black. Pollution is here to stay. Swim deep with me, my little goldfish. Swim deep with me, my love. Don’t swim too high, or you might die. Oil slick floats above.” Remember when the biggest environmental problem was just pollution?

In college, I protested the Seabrook nuclear power plant construction. In 1979, a near meltdown at the Three Mile Island plant happened shortly after I’d seen “The China Syndrome.” I wrote an article called “The China Syndrome: First the Movie, Now the Mess.” I wanted to be a broadcast journalist, just like Jane Fonda in the film. I believed television was the most powerful medium for shaping public opinion and affecting social change. 

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