TEDTEXT - Climate Strike Protest
October 7 2019
Speaker 1. I’m struggling to see how protesting does anything but make people angry. It’s such a negative form of persuasion. I’m just trying to understand the perceived outcome of the protests, not the movement itself.
Speaker 2. I respect everyone’s right to protest and I don’t think any less of anyone for attending. I agree with Speaker 1. 500 people attended the protest during school time / work time, yet a community tree planting day the following morning which was a weekend attracts 60 people. Why didn’t it attract 500? Climate change is very emotive movement and people connect with its seriousness on a very personal level, but beyond vocalising these concerns actually don’t seek to implement much action. That’s all I’m saying. It’s not the message or the cause it’s just the sensationalism and prioritising associating oneself with the climate change movement over actually getting on with it.
Speaker 3. The purpose behind Friday’s peaceful march is two fold:
1) Show our local / regional / central government that the climate crisis is a serious concern to the public and we need systemic change, and leadership in that change. We have a great opportunity now, before 12 Oct, to be voting in our local / regional elections for people who will influence the process through which decisions are made, and who can put pressure on central government in ways that individuals cannot.
2) Inspire people to question whether they also value this and want to act on this. The problem with facebook comments is you’re never getting a representative sample of the population. You’re getting the 10% who are loud enough and passionate enough to say something about their certain view of the world and they are not gonna change. Behind that 10% are the 90% who may or may not be on the fence and ready to change their mind or their actions. This is the same for the public. When we take to the streets and share our views, it is partly in the hope that some people on the fence may just be swayed enough to get off it.
I agree with reasonable discussion. It can be hard to reach people outside of our usual circles and positive feedback loops in everyday life though.
This is not about individual actions in our homes anymore, this is far, far bigger than that - it is about supporting small business doing the right thing, challenging big business doing the wrong thing, and pressuring our governments to do the same.
Speaker 4. I reckon protests raise awareness and show politicians and others that enough people are serious enough about something to get out and say so - even if they don’t know what the solutions might be or even if they don’t understand the issue itself. Ultimately, we live in an economic system that is disastrous for our environment. How to solve this we don’t rightly know yet. People would like to maintain current lifestyles/economy AND protect environment but I don’t believe we can. I reckon the two are mutually exclusive. However, recognising and accepting the issue and that many people want to find another way is a step that gives me, as a policy and governance person, the license to think and argue for stepping off the precipice into the unknown of what happens next.
Speaker 5. I’m all for a good, peaceful protest. It’s visual and it sends a message. We all know social media uses algorithms to make you feel like you’re not alone, but this makes it hard to gauge how many people actually care about this issue. I wasn’t here for the protests, but seeing the pictures made me realise it’s not just a handful of people who pretend to care on Facebook. It showed that there’s a lot of real-life people out there who really do care about climate change and the environment.
Speaker 2. This is like therapy. Speaker 4’s point that people want to maintain lifestyles and save the environment is bang on - they are mutually exclusive. And that’s at current global population, let alone the 84 million additional people that join the world annually.
I hate to use the G word, but what irritates me about Greta, is not her desire to change but the aggressive finger pointing at a generation that has provided her with many great things. Every generation inherits mistakes as much as they inherit the previous generations lessons, knowledge and assets. To me she is creating a division between generations when there could be at least a morsel of acknowledgement of the good that she has inherited.
A hugely unpopular narrative is that of the older generation calling kids naive or ungrateful, but there is truth in it. Kids have no idea how much their lives would regress if they had to move to a lifestyle that didn’t have any environmental knock on effects. The problems are massively complex and when they say that the oldies have failed them they completely alienate an important generation.
Do what you can and most importantly get planting, that’s about the most progressive change you can personally make.