This Independence Day we are reminded of the role of our great state in our nation’s independence and in firing the first 13 Gun Salute (once in the morning and again as evening fell) in observation of our independence back on July 4, 1777, in Bristol, RI. It was a bunch of revolutionaries back then that fought for our land and freedom and once again it is a bunch of revolutionaries that fight today to protect our land and way of life. Revolutions are far from being clean and tidy and more often they are messy – but we are in this together and we can make it! Today we find ourselves in the midst of another revolution, a clean renewable energy revolution and a state-wide movement against the proposed power plant.
We have had important victories along the way already but the fight is not over. There is much left to do and we need every man, woman, and child. Everyone’s contributions are needed, valued, and greatly appreciated.
We continue to march forward and like the speech from the movie Independence Day, “We will not go quietly into the night!” (Adapted from, “Do not go gentle into that good night” by Dylan Thomas) We march forward inspired by the recent Access Northeast pipeline news, and the Rehoboth compressor station news and so much more. We fight for our family, for our neighbors, and for our state. We fight for the person on our left and on our right.
We also march forward with the knowledge that despite whatever false facts and fear mongering are thrown out there, we know the proposed plant is not needed at this time and would not significantly lower our energy bills. It would, however, destroy hundreds of acres of important forest (according to both Audubon & TNC), put a community already overburdened by gas infrastructure at increased risk, and would lock us into decades of climate warming emissions that put our whole state and region at increased risk.
So this Independence Day once again Rhode Island revolutionaries are fighting for our independence. However, while 240 years after that first 13 Gun Salute we are still fighting to protect our land, this time we are now fighting for independence from the grip of fossil fuels.
Thank you to those of you helping in parades today and helping to raise awareness for our shared cause and educate in so many ways every day, sometimes in ways we don’t even know about.
Happy Independence Day to you and yours wherever you find yourself celebrating today. Please share this message.
-The Keep Rhode Island Beautiful Team-