Thousands of students are taking to the streets in cities across the globe to demand leaders take action on climate change.
Young people worldwide know that climate change could literally destroy their future, and they're sick of adults ignoring the crisis unfolding before their eyes.
That's why thousands of students in cities across the globe staged a mass walkout on Friday to demand that their leaders and lawmakers take action on the climate crisis before it's too late.
The images emerging from the protests, dubbed a "Climate Strike," were both striking and awe-inspiring.
In Venice — an already-sinking city where rising sea levels would be particularly devastating — approximately 15,000 students filled the streets, reporter Brian L. Kahn noted, citing a video by Italian activist Tommaso Cacciari.
— Brian L Kahn (@blkahn) March 15, 2019
— Kacey O'Riordan (@KaceyORiordan) March 15, 2019
— Helena (@LilliGreber) March 15, 2019
The protests have also come to the U.S., where young people in dozens of cities have walked out.
The students organizing the U.S.-based walkout include Isra Hirsi, the 16-year-old daughter of Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN).
Three amazing young women—Isra Hirsi, age 16; Haven Coleman, age 12; and Alexandria Villaseño, age 13—have organized youth climate strikes around the country tomorrow. Their demand: a livable future for their generation.
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) March 14, 2019
Included in the U.S. walkout organizers' platform is a demand that lawmakers back the Green New Deal introduced by Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio Cortez of New York and Sen. Ed Markey of Massachusetts.
"With our futures at stake, we call for radical legislative action to combat climate change and its countless detrimental effects on the American people," the organizers wrote on their website. "We are striking for the Green New Deal, for a fair and just transition to a 100 percent renewable economy, and for ending the creation of additional fossil fuel infrastructure. Additionally, we believe the climate crisis should be declared a national emergency because we are running out of time."
Of course, Republicans have denounced the Green New Deal at every turn. They've made false and ridiculous claims about what the deal would do, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is attempting to play gotcha politics on the legislation rather than hold a genuine debate about it in the Senate.
One GOP lawmaker even likened the deal to "genocide," in perhaps the most outrageous attack on the proposed deal yet.
But if these young people are any indication, Republicans' policy of climate denial won't be a winning one in the future.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.