London, May 22 (ANI): After 19 years of first waging a war against corporate America, Erin Brockovich has launched another battle against authorities and that too of a similar nature.
The small-town single mum shot to fame after standing up to an industrial Goliath and winning and is now campaigning against BP for the Gulf of Mexico oil spill.
Brokovich-whose life inspired the 2000 movie 'Erin Brokovich' starring Julia Roberts- addressed an audience of more than 300 anxious individuals in Pensacola, Florida, who have gathered to hear how they can seek legal redress for the Gulf of Mexico oil spill.
"Stand up to BP and say, 'You know what, I'm not taking your shit any more,'" the Times quoted her as telling the crowd.
"If you stand down and you say nothing and you get complacent and let them run over you, they will do that. They are already doing that. I'm telling you: Don't let them," she added.
However, the 49-year-old former beauty queen turned environmental activist seems momentarily beaten by the magnitude of the current problem.
"In all my 19 years this is the first time I feel helpless. I'm the one that usually sends a message of hope and I'm feeling helpless in this scenario because it's so big and so complex and so . . . just awful," she admitted.
Brokovich is in Pensacola as part of a Gulf Coast tour to help lawyers to connect with victims of the Deepwater Horizon disaster- fishermen whose boats are laid up because one fifth of the Gulf of Mexico's fisheries have been shut down; hoteliers inundated with cancellations from would-be guests who fear that oil is about to engulf the beaches; citizens worried not only by the oil but also by the 650,000 gallons of toxic dispersant that BP emptied into the ocean before the Environmental Protection Agency ordered it to stop.
"A poison is a poison. We're not supposed to be eating it, we're not supposed to be drinking it, and nor is our wildlife. I deal with this fallout day after day - chemicals that have caused autoimmune disease, asthma, children with problems - going from community to community seeing people point out this cancer and that cancer and going to way too many funerals," said Brockovich.
"This spill has the potential to be one of the worst environmental disasters in our lifetime. Every single night the whole thing that's happened with BP makes me sick to my stomach.
"It could be the ultimate battle. I don't think I have ever seen anything of this magnitude. I can't tell you how many times I pull my hair out because what I see in these cases is absolutely unnecessary. These corporations have an opportunity, instead of blaming everybody and dragging the 'little people' through lawsuits . . . step up, take control.
"Stop being deceitful. You can still make it right by people without destroying those people. BP has an opportunity to do that. We'll wait to see if they do it or blow it," she added. (ANI)