From August 20th to September 3rd, a massive demonstration will take place in Washington, D.C. to protest the planned Keystone XL Pipeline, which is slated to bring tar sands oil all the way from Canada to the refineries along the TX gulf coast. Bill McKibben has described this as an action to defuse the largest carbon bomb in North America.
Looks like fall is going to be a season of discontent. A series of powerful videos have recently been posted by activists who plan to attend a demonstration in October 2011 to protest our current state of militarized austerity, which of course also has an incredibly destructive effect on the environment. Journalist Chris Hedges’ explanation of why he plans to attend this event and engage in civil disobedience is particularly powerful, and also serves as a useful explanation for why one might protest the Keystone XL pipeline later this month.
Hedges’ video is one of many powerful pieces that articulate the need for nonviolent direct action at this crucial moment in the struggle for climate justice. It’s a hard-hitting critique of capitalism’s insatiable need to expand, and, in doing so, to consume the planet. This is scary stuff, and Hedges delivers his indictment in a pretty dour manner.
Perhaps, in addition to such searing indictments, what the Climate Justice Movement also needs is a bit of humor. After all, we need to win hearts and minds as well as engage in uncompromising analysis. In this vein, it might be useful to juxtapose Robert Newman’s brilliant and funny History of Oil with Hedges’s video: