BHM Quote: Van Jones On Becoming An Environmentalist


I didn’t start out as an environmentalist.

I started out helping urban kids in trouble and I burned out, going to way too many funerals and court cases that turned out badly.

I was just trying to get my own health back.

I went to these retreat Centers in Marin County, and it was a different world.

They had all this organic food and solar panels and hybrid cars, and I was like — why don’t they have this in my neighborhood?

I thought, if we had these kind of jobs and services in Oakland, we’d probably have less violence.

So I came up with a slogan: Green jobs, not jails. ~Van Jones

This quote came from the man I have called The Great Van Jones in an article called “Jobs czar thinks a different green”. He is the former Special Adviser at the White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) and green jobs. He is the co-founder of Green For All along with Majora Carter to advocate for a national green-collar job agenda.

I think it’s important for folk to know how a guy like him got into this business in the first place. His quote above reflects how it happens for so many. A lot of us will not consider the environment seriously until someone we care for or even we ourselves get sick. The environment can play a role in getting sick and in getting better as stated above.

Van Jones has been hugely inspirational to me and while he was working at the White House he was the brightest spot in the administration for me.

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