Toyota RAV4 EV electric car
One of more than two dozen Toyota RAV4 EV battery electric cars on hand for the LA Film Festival screening of Chris Paine's 'Who Killed the Electric Car?'

Patriotic People

Photos from the LA Film Festival screening of 'Who Killed the Electric Car?'

By EV World

In the beginning of a change, the Patriot is a scarce man, Brave, Hated, and Scorned. When his cause succeeds however, the timid join him. For then it costs nothing to be a Patriot -- Mark Twain

"So, you’re an environmentalist?, the politely curious ask when they learn I have an electric car. My friends just called me a tree-hugger," an attendee at the screening of Chris Paine’s "Who Killed the Electric Car?" explained to me.

But as the photo above illustrates, EVs aren’t just for "tree-huggers" anymore. They are, in fact, the only way -- short of everyone parking their cars and dusting off the bikes hanging in their garages -- that America is ever going to end its addiction to oil.

EVs are now the patriotic thing to do, and like the most patriot movements, it’s a small, vocal, courageous minority that labors without remuneration and often enduring scorn and ridicule that slowly, steadily shifts the conscience of the nation.

Below are some of the people in the vanguard of the movement to not only clean the air, but rescue a world dangerously hooked on petroleum. They are environmentalists, engineers, actresses, school kids, cancer survivors, former car company employees, ranchers, scientists. But above all, they love their country, cherish its freedoms and want to pass on a better, safer, more just and healthier world to their children.

It was an earlier Paine, this one named Thomas, who wrote one of history’s most memorable quotations about patriots and patriotism in a time of deep crisis at the birth of the American nation.

These are times that try men's souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country -- Thomas Paine.

Meet some of the real patriots who are fighting to save our collective future with the twin weapons of technology and passion.

The Winter Soldiers

"Who Killed the Electric Car?" writer and director Chris Paine (left) with Chelsea Sexton (center) -- one of the key people behind the effort to save the electric car from extinction. On the right (for once) is EV World publisher, Bill Moore.

The 'victim' -- A non-functioning GM EV1 without a life of spark in it was on display at the "Green Show" next to the Landmark Regent theater. Other electric and alternative fuel vehicles were also on display from conversions to a Chinese import.

By Molly Tucker's count there were 26 Toyota RAV4 EV battery electric cars parked on both sides of Broxton Avenue in front of the Landmark Regent theater

The government is merely a servant -- merely a temporary servant; it cannot be its prerogative to determine what is right and what is wrong, and decide who is a patriot and who isn't. Its function is to obey orders, not originate them -- Mark Twain

"West Wing" star Allison Janney chats with Chris Paine after giving him an emotional, well-earned hug. If you know the actress between them, let us know, since we weren’t able to find out who she was.

Catherine Bell, co-star of long-running USA Channel series "JAG" also attended the screening and the "Green Show" afterwards. She had recently co-starred in Dean Devlin's mini-series, "The Triangle" and wanted to know more about EVs. Devlin co-funded "Who Killed the Electric Car?"

One of the heroes of the EV1 vigil, Collette Divine (right) with her partner J Karen. Collette was arrested along with Alexandra Paul for attempting to block the shipment of the last EV1s to Arizona where they would be crushed in a remote section of GM's desert proving grounds.

There are many female heros in this story, including little Molly Tucker, who along with Doug Korthof stood their own vigil outside Toyota's corporate headquarters in Torrance, Ca to protest the company's plans to destroy its electric cars. According to her family, the day after Molly's protest, the company relented and has sold many of its remaining non-fleet EVs to private owners, including her parents, Bruce and Bonnie. With them is one of the driving forces of the movement in Southern California, Paul Scott.

It is lamentable, that to be a good patriot one must become the enemy of the rest of mankind - Voltaire

Yet another, female hero of the film, Linda Nicholes waged a long battle with Toyota -- one that isn't completely resolved yet -- over her fleet-leased RAV4 EV. While Toyota has agreed to sell the electric car to its private lease holders, it continues to waver on selling its fleet-leased units into private hands.

The Heroes of Raboy's Rebellion, Dave Raboy and his wife Heather defiantly stood up to Ford Motor Company when the company reneged on a earlier promise to let owners buy their Ford Ranger EV electric pickup trucks, which the Raboys use on their small ranch in the Sierra foothills near Yosemite. After an eight-day protest outside the Ford dealership in Sacramento, Ford agreed to sell Raboy his truck for $1.

Richard Titus, the taller half of the husband and wife team of PlinyMinor, which co-executive produced "Who Killed the Electric Car?" with Dean Devlin's Electric Entertainment. Titus had tried for over a year to lease an EV1 from GM without success... and he wasn't the only frustrated potential customer.

Group photo of many of the heroes involved in the grass roots effort to save the electric car from being crushed, shredded and otherwise completely obliterated from our collective memory.

The sticker on this RAV4 EV says it all.

Times Article Viewed: 12583
Published: 27-Jun-2006


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