Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Van Jones Back in the Game

Van Jones, the environmental justice advocate who relinquished his post as a White House adviser five months ago after coming under fire from conservative activists, is reemerging on the public policy stage to push for green jobs.

Jones, who has been consulting for companies and nonprofits on environmental issues, will start teaching at Princeton University in June and is rejoining the Center for American Progress, a liberal think tank, next month. On Friday, he will receive the NAACP's President's Award, for achievement in public service, the organization announced Tuesday.

His job at the White House Council on Environmental Quality sparked an uproar last fall when conservative talk-show host Glenn Beck publicized some of Jones's earlier comments and actions. Beck attacked Jones for signing a petition in 2004 from the group that questioned whether officials in President George W. Bush's administration "may indeed have deliberately allowed 9/11 to happen, perhaps as a pretext for war," and for using a crude term to describe Republicans in a speech he gave before joining the administration, both of which Jones apologized for before resigning his post.

Jones says, "The good thing about being an American is you're free to think whatever you want, and you're also free to change your mind. That's my story. . . . God willing, I've got 10 or 20 years, 30 years, three decades more work to do. And it's my hope and belief that people will judge me based on that work."

He will have a one-year joint appointment as a distinguished visiting fellow at Princeton University's Center for African American Studies and Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, where he will teach a seminar on environmental and economic policy.

I guess, when all is said and done, I agree with John Ruskin:

"What we think or what we know
or what we believe is, in the
end, of little consequence.
The only consequence is what we do"

Time will tell it all.

Source: Washington Post
Juliet Eilperin
Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, February 24, 2010

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