[video] New Baby Food Flavors: Mercury! Dioxin! And all-time fave Arsenic!

So I’m sitting there eating my lunch during the Andrea Mitchell Reports hour (seriously, I work my lunch around her first 30 minutes or so if I can arrange it) and right at the beginning of the show, when it cuts to a commercial, this is what I see:

If ever a video deserved to go viral, it’s this one, don’t you think!? It is one of the most effective cause commercials I have seen in a very, very long time and it dovetails precisely with my work on behalf of the Moms Clean Air Force (an effort to highlight the incredible damage dirty air does to our kids and us, and the imperative we should all feel in supporting the EPA’s efforts on behalf of clean air).

Naturally, I wanted to know who was behind the ad.  It resides at the URL for Clean Air Saves Lives, but the final seconds of the ad and a tagline at the very bottom of that website reveal that it’s American Family Voices, a group started in 2000 by none other than Mike Lux (he currently serves as the group’s president).  From their mission statement:

American Family Voices was founded in 2000 to be a strong voice for middle and low income families on economic, health care, and consumer issues. Since our founding, we have educated the public and pushed for legislation on a number of vital issues to make American families more secure…

If that doesn’t involve clean air, nothing does, right? On their media page, you can see the other very poignant short videos they’ve used to engage, inform and activate people.

Meanwhile, the Clean Air Saves Lives site gives you the opportunity to send an email to the EPA to let them know you support their efforts. Feel free to do just that.

Mike Lux wrote this entry at Crooks and Liars back in March about the campaign and titled it, “Life and Death Policies.” Here’s an excerpt:

Contrary to the impression that some politicians and pundits give with their frequent goofy rhetoric and games, politics and policymaking is a very serious business, sometimes quite literally a life and death matter….And if you allow more deadly poisons into the air, a lot of people — including children — will die. This is not speculation; these are very well documented facts, confirmed by numerous scientific studies and statistical analyses.

Take the Clean Air Act. EPA research shows that the Clean Air Act prevents 160,000 deaths of our fellow Americans every single year. Even more specifically, their data shows that 230 of the deaths prevented in 2010 were infants, the smallest and most vulnerable people of all. Because mercury, arsenic, dioxin, ammonia, sulfur dioxide, formaldehyde, and all kinds of other poisonous chemicals don’t get into our air supply, 160,000 of us are still walking around that wouldn’t be otherwise — and every one of us is a lot healthier. The Clean Air Act is government at its best: a policy that has been one of the most successful legislative achievements in the last 100 years.

Now I don’t know about you, but I really like babies. I think they are God’s greatest creation. Holding them, talking to them, making funny faces to try to get them to smile at me — it’s one of my very favorite things to do in life. So I’d really prefer if more of them made it to adulthood.

This attack on the Clean Air Act is politics at its worst, driven by special interest money and a blind hatred of government — even (especially?) government that is doing exactly what it should be doing….

Some folks railed against my wanting U.S. Representative and Republican presidential primary candidate Michele Bachmann to explain how her pro-life position can be sincere and authentic when she absolutely has no tolerance for the EPA. But there is simply no way to escape the hypocrisy of that position and the ad and Lux’s post and the comments beneath it indicate that people  – except for Bachmann and those who support her position – get it.

Finally, if you want to get a real sense of how campaigns like the one that American Family Voices and MCAF can and will make a difference, join the live online discussion this Wednesday, July 27, from 2:30-3:30:

Event: Change the World | Malcolm Gladwell is Missing the Point: This Revolution WILL Happen Online Because Parents Love Our Kids
Date: July 27, 2011
Time: 2:30 PM EST
Location: BlogTalk Radio
Register here.

Moderator: Cheryl Contee, Jack and Jill Politics

With Elisa Batista, founder of Mothertalkers; Joanne Bamberger, aka PunditMom and author of Mothers of Intention; and Dominique Browning, author of Slow Love, blogger at Slow Love Life, former editor-in-chief of House & Garden, and lead blogger for the Moms Clean Air Force

And, another reminder: The deadline to submit comments on the new Mercury and Air Toxics rule has been extended to August 4. If you haven’t already done so, you have through then to email the EPA and show your support for the rule. And, of course, you can join the Moms Clean Air Force to help fight for clean air for our kids anytime. Every voice counts and is needed. Thank you.

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