Tuesday, August 4, 2020

The Power of Protest in 2020

The freedom to participate in non-violent protest is an essential part of a healthy democracy. Over the years such protests have been crucial to the advance of a range of issues from women's rights to civil rights.  Most recently the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement stood up to police brutality and helped to bring real reforms to cities across the United States.

From income inequality to gun violence protestors are fighting for justice. These interrelated undertakings include the struggle against environmental racism. All around the world climate demonstrations are being led by young people. People like Greta Thunberg and many others show us the true power of protest.

Protest can augur meaningful change as illustrated by an important yet under-reported victory in Canada. Five months after the world's largest ever climate march in Montreal protestors helped to diffuse a massive tar sands carbon bomb in Alberta.

The climate movement encompasses a wide swath of people from diverse walks of life. Women are leading the call for environmental justice and organizations like the People's Climate Movement are part of a broad climate coalition.  Groups may have different approaches but there is one goal and that is climate action.

While the U.N. amplifies the message of climate protests, governments in some of the world's leading  democracies are trying to curtail people\s right to demonstrate.  No democracy has been more active in its efforts to outlaw protest than the U.S. under Donald Trump.  However, the president's most recent attempts to stymie protest have failed miserably. This includes the Lafayette park fiasco and his efforts to depict BLM protestors as terrorists.  His use of secret police has only emboldened protestors and caused a growing number of Americans to realize that protest is an appropriate and necessary response to the Trump administration.  Indeed many believe that protesting Trump is essential to the survival of life on this planet. However, the most effective opportunity for Americans to express their outrage will take place on November 3rd.

States Outlawing Protest to Protect the Fossil Fuel Industry
Greta is Steadfast Despite Being the Target of Generational Warfare 
A Greta Thunberg Christmas Carol - Hope that Augurs Action  
The Search for Greta - A Short Film about Hope as we Teeter on the Cusp of an Apocalypse
Greta Says World Leaders are Doing Nothing Except "Clever Accounting and Creative PR"
Greta's Scowl Speaks for Millions
Climate Leader Greta Thunberg GMO's Person of the Year
Greta's Strikes for Climate Action and Her Game-Changing Global Movement
Like a Dickensonian Ghost Greta Thunberg Offers a Chilling Rebuke and a Haunting Warning
Kids Are Fighting for their Lives
Climate Strikes Call for Urgent Action
Kids are Turning to the Courts to Demand Climate Action

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