The Sierra club appears to be attempting to mobilize the George Floyd protesters to join their efforts in fighting global warming and climate change.
“During the street protests and marches of the past two weeks, many people carried signs that read ‘Racism Is Killing Us.’ It’s no exaggeration to say that racism and white supremacy harm all of us, because in addition to robbing us of our humanity, racism is also killing the planet we all share,” Hop Hopkins writes for Sierra Club.
“An idea—a long-overdue realization—is growing in the environmental movement. It goes something like this: ‘We’ll never stop climate change without ending white supremacy,'” the article continues.
“This argument has entered the outdoor recreation and conservation space thanks to the leadership of Black, Indigenous, and other people of color in the climate justice movement. The idea has taken on new force as folks in the mainstream environmental movement do our best to show up for George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, and all the Black people still living and subject to police violence.”
Here’s the profound connection: “You can’t have climate change without sacrifice zones, and you can’t have sacrifice zones without disposable people, and you can’t have disposable people without racism.”
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“We’re in this global environmental mess because we have declared parts of our planet to be disposable. The watersheds where we frack the earth to extract gas are considered disposable. The neighborhoods near where I live in Los Angeles, surrounded by urban oilfields, are considered disposable. The very atmosphere is considered disposable. When we pollute the hell out of a place, that’s a way of saying that the place—and the people and all the other life that calls that place home—are of no value.”
In addition to the California, examples are Navajo Nation, south side of Chicago and pollution in general.
“Devaluing Black and Indigenous people’s lives to build wealth for white communities isn’t new. White settlers began that project in the 15th century, when they arrived in North America. Most Native peoples of North America lived in regenerative relationships with the land; they were careful to take no more than the land could sustain. The settlers had another ethic: They sought to dominate and control. They cleared the old-growth forests and plowed the prairies to make room for their wheat and their beef. They nearly drove the bison to extinction in a calculated scorched-earth tactic that was part of a larger ethnic-cleansing agenda…”
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