Hopeful backs ‘low-carb’ diet


SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Monica Vernon, a Democrat running for Iowa’s 1st Congressional Districtseat, believes the nation needs to slim down.

 “The world needs, and America needs, to go on a low-carb diet,” Vernon said. “But it’s [a] low carbon [diet].”

Vernon spoke at an event hosted by the University of Iowa branch of the League of Conservation Voters Student Coalition on Wednesday. The event was focused on making environmental issues more accessible to college students, something that is important to achieve change, Vernon said.

“We have to get something major turned around in the next 10 years,” she said. “The students are the future.”

Vernon experienced firsthand how devastating climate change can be with the flood of 2008, she said. Now, she is campaigning for Iowa’s 1st District seat to take some issues to a larger stage.

Evan Wolfe, the president of the UI’s League of Conservation Voters Student Coalition, was one of the lead organizers of the event, and he agrees the issue needs to be looked at in a different way. Wolfe said leaders need to appeal to more personal issues for students.

“In the last 10 years, you’ve been hearing a lot of ‘doom and gloom,’ ” he said. “That’s not mobilizing people, and it’s not making change.”

Wilfrid Nixon, a UI civil and environmental engineering professor, said the environment is very important, and students may provide the key to solving some of these issues.

“My hope would be that students are at a phase in their life where they’re particularly critical of everything they hear,” he said. “It’s fresh thinking; it’s new thinking. Getting some new thinking in there is always a good idea.”

In addition to Vernon’s speech, the event featured several student-made images to relating the issue of climate change to students. One of these which was particularly powerful for many students, Wolfe said, was an image of a glass of beer with the words “Dirty water = dirty beer.”

Vernon said messages like this are important because they make the large, complex issue of the environment “simpler.”

“When something is that big, it’s easy to feel that you can’t be part of it,” she said. “For people to tune in, we have to get it to a simpler level.”

Vernon’s message has already reached at least one UI student.

UI junior Leah Campbell said Vernon’s presentation made the issue more interesting.

“I thought it was interesting,” Campbell said. “It got me excited.”

Though Vernon firmly believes climate issues are of utmost importance, others aren’t so sure. Johnson County Republicans head William Keetle said he is unsure the issue even exists.

“I am a little bit skeptical of the absolute certainty of some of the people on the global-warming side,” he said.

Vernon said outreach like this is the first step to really making change.

“It’s time to do big things, all of us,” she said. “It’s really important that we throw the gauntlet down on [the issue of] the environment.”

In today's issue:

Privacy Policy (8/15/07) | Terms of Use (4/28/08) | Content Submission Agreement (8/23/07) | Copyright Compliance Policy (8/25/07) | RSS Terms of Use

Copyright © The Daily Iowan, All Rights Reserved.