Posted by: formeraccount | July 13, 2011

Those Constantly Misbehaving Sheep

“Is it not enough for you to feed on the good pasture, but must you tread down with your feet the rest of your pasture? When you drink of the clear water, must you foul the rest with your feet.” – Ezekiel 34:18

The metaphor of the Lord as the good shepherd is one of the most well known and beloved images of God in the Bible. The pleasant images of the 23rd psalm may be the first to spring to mind, but they are certainly far from the only images. The prophet Ezekiel takes the leaders of Israel to task for being irresponsible shepherds. “Ah, you shepherds of Israel who have been feeding yourselves! Should not shepherds feed the sheep?” (Ezek 34:2b)

As it was then, so it is now, over 2,500 years later. It is not enough that coal is extracted from mountains, but rather the mountaintops must be leveled and the streams polluted so that it can be done more cheaply.

It looks as though the leaders of the United States are about to take steps to make it even easier for our common pasture and water supplies to be trampled down. The House of Representatives is expected to vote on the Clean Water for Cooperative Federalism Act of 2011 (HR 2018) later this week. Ironically, the only part of that title that is not misleading is ‘2011.’ The bill transfers power away from the EPA and to the states. It does not increase cooperation, it just shifts power. Allowing states to set their own standards basically undoes the protections of the 1972 Clean Water Act.

Ezekiel condemns the way in which people are pushed aside and prophesies and end to it. “Because you pushed with flank and shoulder, and butted all the weak animals with your horns until you scattered them far and wide, I will save my flock, and they shall no longer be ravaged” (Ezek 34:21)

HR 2018 is being rushed through the House of Representatives and is expected to come up for a floor vote this week. Please call your congressperson and ask them to vote against HR 2018. (Call the capital switchboard at 1-800-270-0309 and they will connect you to your congressperson’s office)


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