It has been a great honor for me to serve in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives. Being elected into this office in 2006 was the fulfillment of a lifelong dream. After careful consideration, I have chosen after three decades of public service not to seek re-election in 2020. To my constituents and supporters, I extend my most sincere appreciation for the opportunity to serve the 152nd District. For those of you who have been by my side since my first Upper Moreland School Board election in 1989, for my first Upper Moreland Township commissioner election in 1992, and for my deployment in Iraq in 2003, I am especially grateful. Thank you for your loyal support.
I will continue to serve as the chairman of the Human Services Committee until the end of the current session. As you know, many human service issues still need an advocate to bring them to the attention of the legislature. I echo the words of the late Hubert Humphrey, who said, “The moral test of government is how it treats those who are in the dawn of life, the children; those who are in the twilight of life, the elderly; and those who are in the shadows of life, the sick, the needy and the disabled.” Initiatives on which I am proud to have made progress include increased services for adults with special needs; better treatment options for those struggling with mental illness and addictions; protection for our children; and improved care for our veterans.
With God’s grace, I will be afforded another 30 years to spend with my family and friends, and to serve our community in a different capacity. As you may know, I recently completed my doctoral degree at Temple University, and have started to write a book about my experiences in Harrisburg. In any endeavor, you can be sure I will continue my devotion to public service, human services, assisting adults with special needs, supporting Pennsylvanians with mental illness and defending our disabled veterans. God bless you, and God bless America.
Rep. Thomas P. Murt
152nd Legislative District
Back to the good ol’ days
It’s just another pleasant valley Sunday — you know, when high school sporting events used to be a family day, when kids frolicked in the stands, families of both teams discussed GPAs and SATs and promising happy college futures for their children. Ah, the good ol’ days.
However, today, families talk about where they purchased the cheapest Kevlar jacket or, “Hey, are you packing?” Or, questions that were unheard of in the ’70s and ’80s.
So, what the heck happened? Are we that disconnected in our kids’ lives? Do they simply run amok without any parental guidance? This is sad.
Education is vital to combat climate change
The first time I learned about climate change, I was 8 or 9. My family friends had bought me a large, scary book with the words “CLIMATE CHANGE” printed in bold letters on the front. The images of cars stuck in floods on the front terrified me, and I quickly went to shove it away on a shelf and avoid the uncomfortable thoughts in regard to the impending collapse of our environment.
Even just the action, however, of my parents buying me that book already changed my perception of the looming climate crisis. As my parents began introducing the concept of climate change more and more into our daily discussions, the issue became more and more pertinent to me, and I began to do research on my own. I wasn’t truly moved to act, however, until I became more informed of the crisis through Greta Thunburg’s riveting youth movement, which forced me and my friends into dialogues that we previously were able to avoid and disregard.
Along with volunteering, calling our senators and voting, it is vital that our communities begin fostering open dialogue in regard to the climate crisis. Dialogue is essential for people to begin forming solid opinions and thoughts about climate change, especially for the youth.
We must begin discussing ideas like conservation, renewable energy and waste management at younger ages, and raise these issues in our communities, in order to never ignore the big white “CLIMATE CHANGE” book on our shelves. We now have the exciting opportunity to pass H.B. 1425 and S.B. 630 to ensure that Pennsylvania uses clean energy. We must campaign together, speak about these bills as a community, and show our legislators that this is our priority.
In order to stop the worst effects of climate change, we must transition to 100% renewable energy. We cannot let this opportunity pass.