Being an activist celebrity is a blessing and a curse. On the one hand, some people secretly question whether you have sufficient expertise to weigh in on major matters, like cancer or polluting the water supply of New York and Philadelphia. On the other hand, many issues of urgent social concern don’t get attention without a star attached to the cause. Fortunately, some celebrity performers are taking the spotlight off themselves and focusing it on crucial matters that affect us all. I personally am deeply grateful to Deepak Chopra to act as the first major health leader to highlight these issues. It’s an answer to a green health journalist’s prayers.
Mark Ruffalo defends the waters of life from fracking. Fran Drescher urges women, industry and government to prevent cancer and save lives. Russell Simmons shifts the conversation from traditional notions of power to compassion as real strength. This coming week at DeepakHomeBase in New York City, Deepak Chopra will engage in three conversations on three different nights with these three stars, people who care. Russell Simmons will join Chopra on September 12th. Mark Ruffalo will appear on September 14th, and Fran Drescher on September 15th. All programs will be available on livestream during the event, and following it as well. I’ll cover the events and report on them here.
I interviewed Ruffalo on my radio program, Connect the Dots (on the Progressive Radio Network on Saturdays at Noon ET), and he is a knowledgeable champion, probing how to meet our energy needs without allowing hydraulic fracturing for gas (aka fracking) to pollute our water, food, and air. Ruffalo debunks the notion that gas (as opposed to coal) can help to de-accelerate global warming. He points to recent research by Cornell University climate experts showing that gas has a greater greenhouse gas footprint. Moreover, the same study reveals that flowback water from gas wells carries large quantities of methane, which may be spread far and wide in the hurricane and flood prone Northeast– which in areas upstream from two major cities, just got more flood prone in the last two weeks.
Fran Drescher, who founded Cancer Schmancer in 2007 points out that after a forty year “War on Cancer,” American health is still being held hostage because we aren’t addressing the causes of cancer. She believes that “prevention and early detection should be on equal footing with the search for a cure. Why not triple the weapons in our arsenal?” Like Ruffalo, Drescher urges citizen action. Drescher wants to “turn the tide on cancer through asking Congress to support the Safe Cosmetics Act of 2011.” Ruffalo urges that citizens ask President Obama to protect the drinking water of 15 million people (in New York and Philly) through preventing fracking in river basin of the Delaware River. To learn more, people are invited to tune in to DeepakHomeBase to this series of events, follow my reporting on green health activism, and discover why activism is the newest recipe for healthy people, a healthy society, and a healthy planet.
Become part of the solution. You’re warmly invited to sign up at DeepakHomeBase www.DeepakHomeBase.com for upcoming programs, and for weekly blogs, radio shows, and activist opportunities at www.healthjournalistblog.com.
Published by The Huffington Post