I’ll be in New York City, my hometown, on Sunday, September 21, marching with thousands of others who want to see meaningful action on climate change. Why am I marching?
2. Because climate change is caused by us. This isn’t some external, extra-human process. This is a process that is caused by the release of too much heat-trapping gases into our atmosphere. And we are responsible for releasing these gases — mostly carbon dioxide and methane. Yes, some of these gases are absolutely necessary for the survival of the global ecosystem. But what is happening today is a restructuring of the very chemistry of our atmosphere.
3. Because I want to walk the talk. It’s a basic parenting creed. If we want our kids to learn the value of doing something, we need to actually do it ourselves. If we want our kids to learn the value of taking care of our world, we need to take action ourselves. So we march.
4. Because of Motherlove: It’s what drives all of us here at Moms Clean Air Force to fight for clean air. We love our kids. We want them to have healthy future.
5. Because they’re gonna ask. This is a critical time in our nation, and world. Decades from now, our children will look back on this moment and see that a movement of parents helped turn the tide on runaway climate change. Our kids will ask us what we did to make a difference on this issue. You don’t want to say you did “nothing.”
6. Because children should be the poster children of the climate movement. We’ve seen so many terrible images of polar bears stranded on melting ice floes. My heart goes out to them, it really does. But the climate impacts I am most worried about are the ones that will hit closest to home. It’s time to make children the salient symbol of curbing greenhouse gas pollution. It’s the quickest, and most honest, way to change our course. That’s why we need parents on the line, raising our voices, and being counted.
7. Because we’ve spent too long with our fingers in our ears. It’s not easy dwelling on the fact that climate change threatens the global food supply, or that it may be bringing us to the brink of a mass extinction. There’s only so much energy we have. When the kids are finally asleep and the dishes are done, I sometimes just need to tune out. This march is a chance to absolve myself of my escapist tendencies. It’s our chance to tune in.
8. Because this is how we change the world. Global leaders will be meeting about climate change at the United Nations in New York the week of September 22. They need to see that people demand action. There is nothing more powerful than human bodies, standing together, to move the hands, hearts, and minds of politicians. I will be one of those bodies.
9. Because of my special places: a saltwater marsh; a storm-scoured beach; a fern-blanketed hillside. These places feed my soul. One of my most cherished parenting roles is sharing this miracle of a planet with my family. Because climate change threatens these special places, I am marching.
10. Because of hope. This march will be among the most inspiring events of my lifetime. Hundreds of buses are coming from across the country. Delegations are coming from around the world. There will be puppets, marching bands, and singing. We are going to have a blast while we make a difference. Won’t you join us?
Image via People’s Climate March