Protestors Denounce Oil Spill, Call on Gov. to 'Seize BP'

Demonstrators in Los Angeles protest against BP and the devastating environmental effects of the recent oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico on Wednesday, May 12, 2010. (Photo: Sierra Club)

Demonstrators across the nation staged protests on Wednesday against British Petroleum (BP) and the devastation the recent oil spill has had on the environment.

Several non-governmental organizations and faith groups participated in the protests, which were held in 20 major cities including Los Angeles, Calif., Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., Washington, D.C. and Austin, Texas.

Slogans such as "no BP, not for me" and "drill, baby, drill means spill, baby, spill" were shouted as the demonstrators lobbied for a government seizure of BP's assets to pay for the spill clean-up.

In L.A., the demonstration was held in front of a BP Green Curve gas station, which the oil company claims is designed to teach people how to live greener lives.

"To have a company that is responsible for one of the worst environmental disasters ever claim to be able to teach anybody how to live green is utter hypocrisy," Ian Thompson of Answer Coalition told the Los Angeles Times.

Over 4 million gallons of oil have spilled into the Gulf of Mexico since BP's Deepwater Horizon rig exploded on April 20.

The clean-up effort has cost BP over $450 million so far and sent the company's stocks plunging.

An op-ed in the New York Times from Pulitzer Prize winner Thomas Friedman called the oil spill a wake-up call for America to take better care of the environment.

"There is only one meaningful response to the horrific oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico and that is for America to stop messing around when it comes to designing its energy and environmental future," Friedman wrote.

"This oil spill is to the environment what the subprime mortgage mess was to the markets - both a wake-up call and an opportunity to galvanize a constituency for radical change that overcomes the powerful lobbies and vested interests that want to keep us addicted to oil," he said.

Copyright © 2013 Ecumenical News