01 November 2009

35 Days - If the Children Knew What We Know...

As I wrote about a few days ago, the young people in Canada are starting to get a little miffed at our government's complete refusal to consider their future and do the right thing in Copenhagen. Mine is such a heartless, soulless generation. We've had too much, and not enough pain, perhaps. We can't imagine going without, and therefore we do nothing (and worse) to ensure that our children and grandchildren will have something when they are our age.

Here's the response from our brilliant young friend who bicycled across Canada this past summer to raise awareness about the global climate change emergency.

"Thank you for getting it and for feeling it. I've been pretty rattled for the past few days watching all of this unfold and watching the media spin its speculation. It is heartbreaking. That said, the youth are pissed off now and we are getting organized — across the country. We are going to keep the heat on every Monday until Copenhagen.... Every time we are betrayed by Members of Parliament, I think to myself, "But I biked across the country for this, I organize every day for this, I read every day for this, I shed tears every day for this, I get little sleep for this — and they still don't hear us, see us, acknowledge us." My sister told me that when they screened the Age of Stupid in Ottawa [our national capital], the MPs that did come were on their Blackberries the whole time."

Sad. Scary. Stupid!

Here's a public service announcement I'd like to share with you — luckily, an enactment. But it makes a good point. And probably does a good job of portraying how the young people of Canada are feeling right now.

What about in your country? Is your government putting children at the centre of your nation's climate decisions, policies and actions?


  1. I am skeptical that the children will save us, because they know what we know. There are no widespread sit-ins at universities, children are not forcing their parents to give up SUVs... The few that do care have to grow up and move out into today's society, which bleeds the compassion and the action out of people. The world's population has doubled so there are more people that will act and take action based on statistics, but the same is true for the other side of the spectrum.
    In the 70s there was a big sustainability movement that followed the oil crash and there was very serious discussions about the need to have no-growth economies that stopped depleting our resources faster than can be replenished. Other then a few leaders and maveriks that emerged, the children of that era are now doing worse then their parents did before.

  2. Whew. Wicked take on our society and our generation, Remi — but spot on! I've often wondered how the peace and love hippie generation became so bloated (and blighted) by buying. But then I remember the forces (and the money) behind the push for ever-increasing consumerism. I think history will show that ours was the luckiest generation in human history — and we blew it.


I would appreciate hearing your thoughts or questions on this post or anything else you've read here. What is your take on courage and compassion being an important part of the solution to the climate change emergency?