Bill McKibben wrote an article for Rolling Stone, Global Warming’s Terrifying New Math. I met Mr. McKibben last year, after he invited me to join him at the White House to be arrested. So on September 3, 2011, the last day of the Tar Sands Action, I was number 33 of those arrested that day and part of the largest act of civil disobedience since the 1960’s.
A few months later, I again had an invitation to join in again for a 2nd act. There were no arrests this time, just 15,000 of us “hugging” the White House. It was during the training for this 2nd Tar Sands Action that I met Mr. McKibben and discussed several ideas I had to expand our impact and get the truth out about the Keystone XL and hydraulic fracturing.
In this article, Mr. McKibben explains why climate change is hurting us all. He gives us the facts, statistics, information and much more. It is both a masterpiece and notes on a nightmare. For those of us who have children, it is a warning we cannot ignore. 2 degrees celsius, that is limit agreed upon in Copenhagen, and as you will see, we are already more than 1/2 way there. Mr. McKibben explains the importance of 3 numbers: 2, 565, 2795. According to the article, “3 numbers that define the crisis of our times”.
The time to act is now. We cannot continue to think that somehow, someone, someday is suddenly going to wake up and say, “Right, today I’ll turn off the gas”, or that legislators are suddenly going to find a backbone and call for the regulation and changes we need.
And so it is up to us, and we have to act now.
There is something we can all do. We can get elected. We can contact legislators. We can invite them to lunch. We can host meetings. We can organize. We can draft legislation. We can run for school board. We can become a citizen lobby.
This country founding was by community organizers, and we can take back our government any time we want, we can follow the example of Tim DeChristopher, to whom I dedicated the essay, I Want You To Join Me, from the words he spoke at his sentencing.
We can start by retrofitting schools, stop using natural gas in our homes and our schools, mandate solar, we do this by running for school board and town council. We take control of budgets and policy making. We for neighborhood lobby groups and we draft legislation and then we insist our legislators meet with us to review. We let our legislators know, that we shall be spending our time and money helping you, either helping you get elected, or helping you OUT of office, that is the decision and this is what we want.
We organize and develop a national strategy. We stop fighting and we start fighting back. And we can do it. It is no magic, it is hard work. We have to go to meetings. Find out the procedure for running for office. We have the willingness to become participants in our democratic process.
Democracy is a participatory sport. And it is time to take our country back from the gasholes and corporate persons and let legislators know the price of our vote. This is what I am working on, and why I started the National Women’s Party & the Equality Coalition, we are working on the 3e’s: education, environment and equality.
Never before have we been faced with such heinous consequences to apathy. Don’t sit this out. Join us. Some of us many need to get arrested. The rest of us need to get elected.