Green in the City

All Blog Posts (15)

Last Day of My Environmental Journey

Throughout this journalism program, I have learned that the world is indeed larger than one's own private bubble of selfishness. When reporters in my class visited some of the toxic sites of Chicago, they often complained of the smell or the appearance of our location. What about the thousands of people who live and cope in these same areas everyday? How do they feel living in that same stench or sewage that you so vehemently condemn? Complaining doesn't help anything. Watching in pity doesn't… Continue

Added by Safiya Merchant on August 4, 2009 at 1:11pm — No Comments

Why I Became Vegetarian

I've always wanted to become a vegetarian, but I didn't have enough strength. I needed something, something that would put it inside my brain that "eating meat isn't right". I've heard the stories of the way animals are slaughtered for meat, but I needed to see in order to believe. And that's what did it; a PETA video titled "Meet Your Meat" changed my view of eating meat for good. I may be new to vegetarianism (I’ve only been vegetarian for about a month), but I plan on staying faithful to my… Continue

Added by LeJohn Montgomery on July 23, 2009 at 11:00am — No Comments

My Part In Helping The Environment

In my house we have a lot of plastic bags. It's almost as if we have a tree hidden in our house that produces them. We keep them stored in the cabinet under our sink. Usually you can’t find anything under the sink because there are so many bags. Some are reused but most end up getting thrown out by my mother.

Recently, most of the stores I visit have gone green by selling reusable bags. It wasn’t until they started doing this that I realized how bad plastic bags our for the environment. I… Continue

Added by Bri'anna Moore on July 21, 2009 at 1:09pm — No Comments

I Blame My School For Not Teaching Me About The Effects Of Burning Coal

I am a youth organizer at the Little Village Environmental Justice Organization.

As a community member I am faced with plenty of community issues, which is why I got

involved with the LVEJO organization. One of the problems we deal with is trying to get

the Crawford Coal Power Plant to shutdown. It has been polluting our air since the 1950s

And we’ve had enough of it! We do community outreach to inform our neighbors how burning

coal is affecting our health.… Continue

Added by Viviana Galvan on July 21, 2009 at 1:00pm — No Comments

Press Conference: Speaking On Public Transit

On Wednesday, July 22, 2009, I, Daniela Jurado, am speaking in front of Dan Lipinski's office about Public Transit. As an LVEJO Intern I am aware of the public transit campaign and will speak on how Public Transit helps the environment. The problem with the CTA is that there aren't many buses and bus routes have been cut. These are peoples jobs getting taken away and people depend on the bus to get around. LVEJO found out that 20% of federal funding goes to public transit and 80% goes to… Continue

Added by Daniela Jurado on July 21, 2009 at 12:30pm — No Comments

We're Headbanging To Hell, Ignoring What We Have To See

I wish that people would go down swinging. The environment is not an issue where we can just say, "Oh, George W. Bush and all them other robbber barrons of the U.S. messed up the environment, oh well, tra la la la..." The common people, whether you like it or not, have more power than any corporation. They rely on our consumer power and when we refuse to give it to them, they'll notice for sure. Don't be the rebel without a cause, bellowing about fighting the man when you don't know what you're… Continue

Added by Safiya Merchant on July 21, 2009 at 12:30pm — No Comments

When I Was A Vegetarian

I use to be a vegetarian when I was younger. I did not eat meat instead I ate vegetarian meat called grillers and chick patties and maybe fried tofu. Instead of eating chocolate I ate a substitute called carob. Soymilk replaced the regular milk that I drink today.

Doing this helped the environment because my household didn’t support the meat industry. Slaughterhouses have to feed the cows and chicken with grains and other crops. These crops are transported in trucks that produce… Continue

Added by Chad Wilson on July 21, 2009 at 12:02pm — No Comments

Google Maps To Spread Awareness Of Environmental Issues

Many of us use Google Maps for different purposes, like getting directions to a certain place etc.

In LVEJO's case, we use Google Maps as an organizing tool to spread awareness of the issues we face in our communities. Some of the youth from Little Village Environmental Justice Organization created a map called " Our Map of Environmental Justice" with the help of Open Youth Networks. On the map we put up pictures of the toxic sites in our community, descriptions, stories, and videos.… Continue

Added by Brenda Elizabeth Becerra on July 21, 2009 at 12:00pm — No Comments

Frustration With Almost Everything

Hey guys, it is Safiya and here's the first blog post. Monumental time in history here, better recognize. Anyways, the scariest thing about the gradual destruction of the environment is that most people don't even care about this devastating decay. I personally can't imagine a world without trees. It's like you took a Claude Monet painting and sliced right through it with a knife. I wonder if our world will end up looking like a lost dream. But most people won't care, they're busy text… Continue

Added by Safiya Merchant on July 21, 2009 at 11:56am — No Comments

Peace For The Environment

The well-being of the environment isn't all up to President Obama or individuals after all. There is a very successful organization known as Greenpeace which was put together by a group of citizens in 1971. Their committed and determined mission to bring peace to the environment around us, started with their accomplished attempt to stop nuclear testing in Alaska.

I've had personal interaction with one of the organization representatives and she informed me about all the dangers that… Continue

Added by Bushra Kabir on July 21, 2009 at 11:43am — No Comments

My Environment Is Full of Violence

Violence All Around Me

I have lived in Little Village all of my life and I'm sure I've seen more than a fifty-year old from the suburbs. Don't get the wrong idea this is a wonderful town. Here there are all kinds of stores, restaurants, and schools, but also all types of people. Unfortunately, this community consists of two different gangs. Almost every day I see a fight at school or next to my house. These are almost never just fights but more like riots. It is unfair for… Continue

Added by Amairani Galvan on July 21, 2009 at 11:42am — No Comments

Green Is So In

It is very exciting to know that people are trying to use their resources more efficiently. We are all realizing we must be very gracious to mother Earth and we have to take care of her. The bad thing is that there are plenty of people who think it is a trend to be green. For example in the website, it says “Thrift store shopping can be a fun, green experience for everyone. Finding cool items that can be recycled will not only help the environment, but they might just help… Continue

Added by Amairani Galvan on July 21, 2009 at 11:16am — No Comments

The Altgeld Gardens Devastation

A very personal impact on my life was seeing the place on a Landfill. I am reffering to Altgeld Gardens. This place made me realize what conditions people live in. I wouldn't imagine how living on a landfill can be. I complain about Little Village being bad, but this place made me thankful that I have a little corner store where I can buy me an apple. These people have no grocery stores and they have tons of open space, but its contaminated. There has been community workers and organizers just… Continue

Added by Daniela Jurado on July 21, 2009 at 11:00am — No Comments

Renewable World

My colleague Maira made a bag out of an old shirt and that got me thinking............

Maybe that could be a benefit to the recession. If we all renewed our old items then we could use our money for more important things. Such as bills or other things that you NEED.

Maira WANTED a bag, she didn’t NEED it. So she did what she had to so that she could have the bag that she wanted. Doing that she also got rid of an old shirt. Maira looked at her shirt as… Continue

Added by Jasmine Johnson on July 14, 2009 at 11:34am — No Comments

Managing Montana's Water

Ms. Butler was telling the class one day about Lake Michigan's unlimited resource of water supply, one of the top in the world, and the Chicagoans are the lucky recipients of that water. She also informed us that many people around the world are trying to get their hands on a vast water supply as that. Since several institutions and areas are trying to become environmentally friendly, they might be demanding water for the sake of their personal businesses and companies. Hopefully, that won't… Continue

Added by Bushra Kabir on July 10, 2009 at 10:00pm — No Comments





Bushra Kabir, Northside College Prep

Bri'anna Moore, Waukegan High School

Managing editors

Brenda Becerra, Curie High School

Amairani Galvan, Farragut Career Academy

Photo editors

Jasmine Johnson, Homewood-Flossmoor High School

Kimani Smith, Noble Street College Prep

Multimedia editors

LeJohn Montgomery, Hales Franciscan High School

Morgan Selvage, King College Prep

Contributing reporters

Carissa A. Eclarin, Schurz High School

Vivianna Galvan, Farragut Career Academy

Daniela Jurado, Farragut Career Academy

Safiya Merchant, Lane Tech High School

Demetria Taylor, Lindblom Math and Science Academy

Chad Wilson, Lindblom Math and Science Academy

Professional staff
Nancy Day, chair, Journalism Department, Columbia College

Workshop director:
Brenda Butler, media specialist and former Chicago Tribune senior features editor

Rui Kaneya, managing editor, The Chicago Reporter

Maudlyne Ihejirika, assistant city editor, Chicago Sun-Times

Charlie Meyerson, former Chicago Tribune online editor, now WGN-AM news director

Billy Montgomery, reporter, photographer, professor, Columbia College

Lynn Norment, former Ebony Magazine managing editor, now media relations specialist, Carol H. Williams Agency

Antonio Olivo, immigration reporter, Chicago Tribune

Nancy Traver, professor and writing coach, Columbia College

Avis Weathersbee, former Chicago Sun-Times assistant managing editor, now blogger and writer/editor

Cassandra West, former Womanews editor, Chicago Tribune, now writer and photographer

Mike Zajakowski, picture editor, Chicago Tribune

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