Sunday, September 21, 2014

People's Climate March: A Demonstration For Human Survival

I must express deep respect for the many people who traveled far distances in order to attend today's People's Climate March in NYC. It's one thing for me to take the subway to the march; it's quite another to plan and pay for the trip and travel from throughout the country. That clearly shows a deep commitment to reversing the threat that climate change poses to us all and to future inhabitants of the Earth.

The environmental movement faces two tremendous challenges. It is calling upon companies like BP and Exxon to leave trillions of dollars' worth of fossil fuels in the ground, because burning those fuels will raise the global temperature to an unsustainable level. Another challenge comes from our corrupt political system, in which massive polluters like the Koch brothers pay legal bribes to politicians in order to continue polluting on a massive scale, as well as fund climate-denial "research" that contradicts the overwhelming scientific consensus confirming climate change.

Despite these challenges, we can't give in to despair. There's too much at stake. While demonstrations alone aren't enough to stop climate change, they are part of changing the popular consensus. Marches were a crucial tactic in the Civil Rights and anti-war movements of the Sixties. It was heartening to see hundreds of thousands out in the streets today demanding changes that are key to human habitation and survival.

Photo by the author

2 comments:

Michael J. Mand said...

The two most important issues facing us in any election is the judiciary and the environment. No other issues have the over-arching consequences as these two. It's nice to see that activisim still lives. And it's so important that the Bill of Rights grants the American people the right to assemble to make a political statement. There are many who want to abridge this right when it suits their political aganda. Just guess on which side of the aisle you find those people.

Jeff Tone said...

They enter from stage right.