On Earth Day every year, we are bombarded with rhetoric that can easily be described as hyperbolic. In their zeal to get out their message, environmental activists go overboard. This year one reason for climate change is social injustice, according to Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Another reason is spelled out in a letter to supporters of the Sierra Club – it’s white supremacy.
AOC and her fellow progressives reintroduced the Green New Deal in Congress this week. New versions of the resolution were filed and a press conference was called. This time around the political atmosphere in Washington is different because Joe Biden is in the White House and Democrats are in charge of both the House and the Senate. Joe Biden is easily persuaded by the far-left and openly embraces a lot of the demands of the socialist manifesto. Adding a racial injustice spin to the proposal is to be expected, given that everything is racial in nature now.
To hear AOC speak, there is entirely too much trampling going on. She specifically points to trampling on indigenous rights and racial injustice.
“The climate crisis is a crisis born of injustice, and it is a crisis born of the pursuit of profit at any and all human and ecological cost,” the New York Democrat said Tuesday as she again pushed the Green New Deal.
“Which means that we must recognize in legislation that the trampling of indigenous rights is a cause of climate change, that the trampling of racial justice is a cause of climate change,” she insisted to clapping.
“Because we are allowing people … to deny ourselves human rights and deny people the right to health care, the right to housing and education,” AOC said at the press conference in front of the Capitol.
Hyperbole. In order to push her extreme agenda, AOC must paint America as extremely racist and a denier of basic human rights. She is representing the next generation of the blame America first class of leftist politicians.
.@AOC: “The trampling of indigenous rights is a cause of climate change. The trampling of racial justice is a cause of climate change.”
— Mike Berg (@MikeKBerg) April 20, 2021
Sandy from the Bronx sounds simpatico with a letter sent to Sierra Club supporters after Derek Chauvin was found guilty of murder in the George Floyd case. According to the Minnesota chapter of the organization, the guilty verdict is not justice for George Floyd and the reason for climate change is white supremacy. Their message sounds incoherent because it is. I read the letter which was provided to me by a friend and it is a large portion of word salad being served up that also exploits the death of sixteen-year-old Ma’Khia Bryant in Ohio. Let’s just toss as much as possible into that salad. It was odd enough for an organization whose mission is conservation to begin a letter with “George Floyd should be alive. We remember George Floyd and how his life mattered. The conviction of Derek Chauvin, made possible because of the recording of a bystander, is a small step towards accountability. But it is not justice.” Yet, that is how it began.
From there the letter continued on by attempting to build a case that racism is embedded into “every aspect of this country”. Justice must ” upend these systems of hate.” Like AOC’s speech at the press conference, the letter is a lot of words strung together yet unable to focus on one central point. The message finally gets around to indicating that white supremacy is to blame for pollution, or something. One paragraph is devoted to that claim and then the letter moves on to promoting local activists and listing organizations in Minnesota who are active in the struggle. The kicker is when the Sierra Club instructs its supporters to “become co-conspirators in their work.” Interesting choice of words, right?
Environmental destruction requires us to believe that some people and communities are disposable, leading to catastrophes like climate change and unsafe air and water. These burdens are most heavily placed on Black, Brown, Indigenous, Asian, and other communities of color. White supremacy is a necessary precondition for big polluters’ agenda. To protect the planet, we must dismantle systemic racism wherever it exists. We must dismantle harmful police systems and replace them with real investments in people and communities.
Community activists from Minneapolis to George Floyd’s birthplace of Houston, from coast to coast, across our country are leading this work. We invite you to seek them out in your local community, listen to them, and become co-conspirators in their work. Since George Floyd’s murder, they have been leading in promoting community care and healing, even under threat of increasing police militarization and violence. They are leading, demanding investments in people not police, in sustainability not fossil fuels and pollution. Because we will never achieve a planet where we all can thrive together without ending the threat of police violence.
Sierra Club isn’t quite bold enough to take the “good trouble” mantra from John Lewis supporters but the message is the same. Get out there and raise a ruckus. Conflating climate change and white supremacy isn’t something that logical people would have seen coming. Yet, here we are. When everything is caused by racial injustice, including seasonal weather changes, then nothing is caused by racial injustice. It is impossible to take these people seriously. Everyone breathes air, drinks water, and deals with weather events. Taking us back to pre-Industrial Revolution days is not the answer. No one wants pollution or natural disasters. Somehow lumping in police violence into the equation is a real stretch, even for the Sierra Club.
I’ll note the irony in the Sierra Club’s gaslighting about white supremacy – just last year the organization finally got around to dealing with history of the group’s founder, John Muir. He had his own white supremacist history. Remember, when progressives accuse others of bad behavior it is because they are doing it themselves. Progressives are masters at gaslighting.
Joe Biden is hosting a two-day virtual climate change summit. Let’s see if he follows the trend and tosses in racial injustice into the discussions.