Hunter Crow for Texas Railroad Commissioner
My name is Hunter Crow and I'm seeking the position of Texas Railroad Commissioner, because we cannot have a healthy humanity without a healthy natural world. Humans are part of nature and rely on the resources of nature for our very existence. We can’t continually harm major parts of the natural world without suffering the consequences.
Climate change is the most far-reaching symptom of the broader imbalance between humanity and the rest of nature. There are many environmental challenges: polluted water, air, and soil; respiratory and reproductive health problems; and disappearing animal and insect habitat, to name but a few. We are facing major adjustments to the balance between humanity and nature, which we can plan to address and ameliorate or suffer the brutal consequences of runaway CO2 levels: rising seas, more frequent and damaging weather events, and more droughts.
Capitalism is both the major cause of these environmental challenges and the major obstacle to solving them. Environmental struggles rapidly run up against the rule of private property over our collective health and well-being. Communities faced with powerful companies dumping toxic waste into their sources of drinking water must wrestle directly with private interests. They run up against both the capitalist economic system and the politicians beholden to corporate interests.
Those that join the Texas Green Party as new members as well as environmental advocates will quickly find that the economic system must be fundamentally altered to meet the growing environmental crises, environmental activism provides a new pathway to socialist consciousness. Fixing environmental challenges requires social decision making based on the needs of society as a whole and the environment on which we depend. Private property “rights” and profits must be discarded as the main determinants on which decisions are based. In addition, if capitalism sufficiently degrades the environment, that will destroy the material basis necessary to build socialism.
Environmental issues will grow in importance and play an ever-larger role in electoral, legislative, and public policy struggles. Communities faced with powerful companies dumping toxic waste into their sources of drinking water must wrestle directly with corporate power. They run up against both the capitalist economic system and against politicians beholden to corporate interests.
Just as our politics and economy need fundamental transformation, so too does the entirety of the intersection between humanity and the rest of the natural world. We need a transformation of not only energy production but also agriculture, industrial production, transportation, distribution, waste disposal, and construction. We need immediate changes that can be won or begun under capitalism. However, permanent solutions require an environmentally conscious socialism.
We need to make personal changes as well. First and most important is for millions more people to become organized environmental activists, building alliances between the environmental movement and all other progressive movements they are part of—community groups, religious groups, unions, and more. Personal changes are most effective when part of mass campaigns that help change the habits and practices of millions of people. We are not chasing a short-lived personal purity but working for basic changes to the systems affecting all of us. Individual changes in consumption and diet can make a major contribution only when linked to changes by millions of people, and linked to changes in our systems of production, construction, and agriculture.
The environmental movement is one key element of the massive coalition that must be built to defeat the extreme-right stranglehold on too much of U.S. governance and public discourse. Environmental issues will grow in importance and play an ever-larger role in electoral, legislative, and public policy struggles. Youth especially have a vested interest in finding real solutions for their future, the kind that only socialism can permanently institute.