All Posts Tagged With: "Policy"

Barack Obama: When Vision Meets Action

photo by: LaKaye Mbah

It was a thrill to vote for Barack Obama on Tuesday during the (I prefer to call it) Chesapeake Primary.

I came to my decision about Obama suddenly and with absolute clarity about a month ago, after reading Doris Kearns Goodwin’s wonderful book about Lincoln and his cabinet, "Team of Rivals." I was so inspired by Lincoln’s example of brilliant, strategic, and compassionate leadership. The man reached out to his rivals, knowing that they were critical to the work that lay ahead. He readily gave others credit and always took responsibility for anything that went wrong. Because he cared so profoundly about this country, he was unremitting in his drive to prove that self-governance is not an absurdity. He had an easy way with people, was a great storyteller, and could relate in a genuine way to any person.

I know it sounds crazy, but – Lincoln was from Illinois (didn’t quite make Senator), was considered an underdog, and initially underestimated by many. Sound familiar? Just to test my theory, I also read "Dreams From My Father ," Barack Obama’s fascinating memoir of his childhood and early adulthood. He tells of his search for identity and meaning with great candor – Continued

MARAMA: The Mid-Atlantic Regional Air Management Association, Inc.

photo by: alyssa

MARAMA: “The Mid-Atlantic Regional Air Management Association, Inc. is a voluntary, non-profit association of ten state and local air pollution control agencies. MARAMA’s mission is to strengthen the skills and capabilities of member agencies and to help them work together to prevent and reduce air pollution in the Mid-Atlantic Region.” The group currently has their headquarters in Towson, MD.

Center For Watershed Protection

photo by: Joe  StewartThe Center for Watershed Protection is a non-profit corporation that provides local governments, activists, and watershed organizations around the country with the technical tools for protecting the nation’s streams, lakes, and rivers. The center has developed and disseminated a multi-disciplinary strategy to watershed protection that encompasses watershed planning, watershed restoration, storm water management, watershed research, better site design, education and outreach, and watershed training.

Partners for Open Space- Save MD Lands

painting by: alyssaPartners for Open Space is a statewide coalition of groups seeking to secure, save, and protect Maryland’s land conservation programs. They are leading an effort to educate citizens, mobilize conservation groups and their members, and expand the coalition to influence Maryland decision makers to restore funding for land conservation and park development.” “Polls show 89% of Marylanders support Open Space” but since “2002 over $480 million has been diverted from Program Open Space”. Go to their resource page and find tools for grass roots organizing. Write to your legislators, find out how you can help, and read and exchange stories.

The Sierra Club – Greater Baltimore Group

photo by: alyssa

The Sierra Club – Greater Baltimore Group, the local branch of the well-respected national organization, includes Baltimore City, Baltimore County, and Harford County. The group spreads its conservation message via hiking outings, lectures, and seasonal events of both the urban and rural variety. Volunteers are consistently sought to lead outdoor programs, assist in fundraising campaigns, petition lawmakers to enact eco-friendly policies, and, on a microcosmic level, make conscious, environmentally aware changes in their own home- and work-spaces.

Community Conferencing Center: Transforming Conflict into Cooperation

courtesy CCCOne evening an old Cherokee told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside people. He said, “My son, the battle is between 2 wolves.” One is Evil. It is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego. The other is Good. It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith.”

The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather, “Which wolf wins?”

The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed”.

Community Conferencing relies on the brilliantly simple idea of shifting the focus from who did what and how can they be punished, to who has been affected and how to repair the harm. When people come together in a conference, they don’t even have to agree on what happened. The conversation draws out ways to work together to make it better. The facilitator is something of a magician, subtly guiding the process and creating the setting for the group’s compassion and wisdom to blossom.

I love the stories. Continued

Baltimore Bioneers

photo by: Doug Retzler

Baltimore Bioneers is the regional branch of the overarching Bioneers community, a “forum for connecting the environment, health, social justice, and spirit within a broad progressive framework.” Combining both the social justice and environmental movements, Baltimore Bioneers works to foster new opportunities for creating solutions for restoring the earth and healing communities. Along with other satellite locations throughout North America, Baltimore Bioneers hosts an annual conference that features local speakers, panels, and workshops, while also broadcasting the plenary talks of the Bioneers Conference in San Rafael, CA. Their website features history of the organization, information on the conference, and ways to get involved.