Wednesday, August 31, 2011

They're getting arrested and going to jail - for our kids, and for our young & middle-aged folk, and for the generations to come

See also Sierra Voices, Hundreds Arrested in D.C., Including Dr. James Hansen, Protesting Tar Sands Pipeline.

These people - the imprisoned Tim DeChristopher, and the 500+ arrested (including Bill McKibben, James Hansen, and a luminous Daryl Hannah) for opposing the proposed Keystone XL "tar sands" pipeline - whose opening would likely be "game over" for the climate, according to Hansen (link) - are the vanguard, and an inspiration to us, to take meaningful action.

Faced with a civilization-threatening global problem, just acting locally is a cop-out.

In a recent letter from prison, DeChristopher wrote that the authorities offered to reduce his 2-year sentence to just 30 days - which he's now served already - if he'd recant and apologize for his act of nonviolent civil disobedience.

As for the 500 plus, my hat is off to you.

If you haven't heard Mary Jorgenson's first-hand recollections of being a Freedom Rider in the 1960s civil rights struggle, she's appearing tomorrow at the Jewish Community Center in GV - details here.

Joy and resolve, folks. And intelligent, civil, effective actions.


gzaller said...

How would stopping this pipeline change anything? Wouldn't they still exploit those oil reserves using trains?

Wouldn't alternative energy development and deep conservation be a more productive goal?

Anna Haynes said...

Thank you Greg. Reading the backgrounder would probably answer your question better than I could - basically, implementing something that makes the worst option much more accessible, is going to have really bad consequences.

This concern is why - if it's on the table - we would fight a proposal to offer heroin in school vending machines, instead of just focusing on providing delicious & super-healthy snacks as other options.

Hope that clarifies -

gzaller said...

Hi Anna, Your analogy could work if heroine was already available on any street corner and everyone was already addicted.

I think fighting the pipeline is pure show and a waste of effort that would not change a thing either way.

We have to stop using oil instead of battling over a pipeline if there is any hope of turning this around. We also have to start thinking for ourselves and reject the statement that this pipeline is some sort of a last stand.

Let's get serious.

Anna Haynes said...

> We have to stop using oil instead of battling over a pipeline

Actually, that's a false dichotomy, we have to do both; since doing the latter will make it easier to do the former before irreparable damage occurs.

gzaller said...

We have to stop using oil instead of battling over a pipeline

It is inconceivable that oil production will diminish if demand continues. Taking a stand against one facet of production is akin to cutting off one's nose to spite his face.

Change will only come from developing new energy sources or cutting back on use. It will never come from trying to fire the same people we are hiring when we buy the gas.

We agree this is an emergency. We need to agree on what to do about it.

Anna Haynes said...

See: xkcd

Anna Haynes said...

...not that I can resist one parting statement...

> Taking a stand against one facet of production

One of the dirtiest, most destructive facets, one that enables our addiction & denial to continue for much longer.

OK, 'nuff said. xkcd, xkcd, xkcd

Anna Haynes said...

Actually Greg, Jim Hansen addresses your "It does no good to stop the Keystone XL pipeline" objection in here (link).
(better than I could)