I am a parish minister currently serving the Eliot Church of Natick MA. Eliot Church is a Community Church affiliated with the Unitarian Universalist Association and the United Church of Christ. Any statements made and postions held in "Unity," however, are solely mine(of course, they may be used with appropriate atribution). Therefore if you disagree, please do not blame the church!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Whose Water Is It?

The UCC News recently reported that the incomparable Lynn Redgrave has lent her talents to a new UCC documentary concerning the growing privatization and impending shortage of water on this little planet of ours. Water, of course, is necessary for our survival and that of every living thing. It's life-giving qualities are also symbolically important (yes, Baptism does spring to mind, no?). Maybe the documentary (Troubled Waters, airing on October 22) may be worth a look.

We sould all ask ourselves what it means when we are so willing to sell our rights to what God has given to us for the sake of convenience (bottled water) and short term profit. It is an intriguing example of human short sightedness and, yes, of greed. It is worth while to note that, while the documentary seems to address the global issue, it is also as American as apple pie. Here is an article about Poland Spring, a division of Nestle, read it and decide "what it means to be from Maine" (from Poland Spring's ad campaign).

After doing some research on this, I may find it difficult to purchase bottled water in the future. It will be a struggle, though. Sometimes one finds it hard to resist the ease of its availability and the generally healthful nature of the product when comapred to, say, Coke. Still, I will think about it. Does anyone know of a sound middle ground?

The article quotes one Jim Wilfong. I have known him my entire life and tend to trust him when it comes to these sorts of things. Ok, it also quotes State Conservation Commissioner Pat McGowan, who disagrees with Jim. I have know Pat almost as long (and they each other, Maine is like that) and he is a good guy, too. However, I have to say that the moral, spiritual, and long term impact on our society and our economy should trump any desire for short-term gains. This is water, people, it should belong to all of us.