Post includes update on the Gen. Strike and the inspiring Youth United for Climate Crisis Action (YUCCA) that is organizing plans for the strike and their comopelling demands.. Post also includes a powerful story of how neighbors linked arms and surrounded a family for hours when they were threatened by ICE and news of Rev Barber’s border action in El Paso.
Changes to the blog. Do you like it? At the request of a couple of readers, we are trying to increase the size of the font in the blog to make it easier to read. This imposes some limits on our formatting (as in all the space in bulleted lists. But is this a good idea? Secondly, and I’ve promised this before, but I am going to try to limit the blog in length, keeping each post to less than 1000 words. When I inevitably stray and post another 2500-3000 word tome, please remind me. What do you think? Larger font? Shorter posts?
What it means to put your body on the line. CNN reports a powerful story of neighbors linking arms and surrounding their neighbor for hours when ICE agents threatened to arrest and deport him. Click here.
The Events and Actions page has a new listing. Rev William Barber and the Poor People’s Campaign is coming to El Paso on July 28-29 for a Sunday prayer vigil (and if you’ve never seen the Rev live, it is worth the drive. On Monday there will be an as yet undefined action at the border. Please share this information broadly among our CD-2 friends. The page also includes details for Roxanne and my talk in Embudo tonight, and the methane rule hearings the end of the month in Carlsbad, Albuquerque, and Farmington.
Retake On Facebook. I’m going to try to post 2-3 articles and/or video on the Retake Our Democracy Facebook Page. By doing so, Retake can share important articles and generate more lively discussion among our FB supporters. Today, we feature a video from Anderson Cooper previewing tomorrow’s Mueller testimony (if you watch, stick around for a very funny Stephen Colbert monologue). Also posted is a report suggesting that the liberal wing of the Democratic Party could divide the party to such a degree as to enable Trump to win a second term? How do you feel about transparent corporate effort to diminish the views and values shared by so many Americans and continue to constrain debate to what is acceptable to the corporate sector, not what is necessary for the rest of us? We’ll try to keep up a flow of stories to engage, educate and encourage discussion.
The Green New Deal Endorsement Is Just a Starting Place
As reported many times in this blog and in our 2019 Legislative Report Card, the NM state legislature got virtually no meaningful climate justice legislation passed during 2019, some would argue that none was passed. Our legislators may have kicked the climate change can down the road, but the newly formed NM Youth United for Climate Crisis Action (YUCCA) has not. Coordinated and trained by EarthCare, its Steering Committee is comprised of just over a dozen youth activists who are coalescing around the September 20 General Strike announced by Fridays for the Future. The Steering Committee has been meeting continuously over the past two months and now has assembled a set of demands for the Governor of NM.
In the Report Card, we descry a culture of patience and moderation that prevails in the Roundhouse, reinforced by an array of procedures, rules and practices that temper action and beat back reform. YUCCA will have none of that, given the urgency of the looming climate catastrophe. Below are their demands. These are not demands written up by a group of adults and then handed to their youth Steering Committee to sign. No, the demands were written collectively by the YUCCA Steering Committee (names listed below). The urgency and precision of the demands reflects the urgency and tone of a generation that will have nothing to do with patience and moderation. These courageous youth will be living the nightmare we bestow upon them unless we adopt their sense of urgency.
Retake will keep you posted on future meetings and on Sept. 20 General Strike plans here in Santa Fe and elsewhere. But keep this date on your calendar and assemble friends committed to whatever these youth ask us to do. For more information, visit climatestrikenm.org
Our movement demands:
A just transition to 100% to renewable energy (nuclear energy is not renewable or sustainable energy) no later than 2030;
Immediate action to protect New Mexico’s lands, water, climate and communities by placing a moratorium on fracking;
The immediate investment of revenues generated from extractive industry into an Economic Transition Study and Planning & Implementation Fund accessible to local communities in order to develop alternatives to our state’s dependence on oil and gas revenues. We will no longer allow the education, social service, and infrastructure needs of New Mexicans to be held hostage by fossil fuel extraction that threatens our existence. We hold our state government accountable for the failure to plan and generate alternatives to fossil-fuel dependency over the last 50 years. We raise the fact that despite our oil and gas “riches” – our state remains one of the poorest with failing education and health care systems, unmatched levels of childhood poverty and food insecurity, and limited economic opportunities. The fossil fuel industry has clearly NOT been working for New Mexicans;
Transition planning and implementation must be designed to address the needs and demands of those most affected by the climate crisis;
Renewable energy investment must explicitly address equity issues, be paired with investment in energy conservation and efficiency, and be designed to maximize community benefits and control (such as community solar);
We are committed to centering the voices of indigenous, (low-income) youth (of color) in the planning process, as our voices have historically been divested of any semblance of decision-making authority;
We demand a just transition that prioritizes indigenous sovereignty; establishes reparations and remediation led by and for Black people, Indigenous people, people of color and poor communities for years of environmental injustice, establishes legal rights for ecosystems to thrive and regenerate in perpetuity, and repairs the effects of ongoing ecocide to prevent extinction of human and all species, in order to maintain a livable, just planet for all.
With immediacy, we call on the elected officials of New Mexico to declare a climate emergency and to support the Green New Deal and Equitable & Just Climate Platform; and for our adult allies to step out of their routines, workplaces, and comfort zones on the 20th of September to show their support for and invest in our cause and the future.
Developed by the YUCCA Steering Committee. Kendrick Manymules, Aspen Coriz-Romero, Castille Aguilar, Veroaylin Campos, Seneca Johnson, Gimena Perez, Faith Pennell-Sutton, Eliza Hillenkamp, Fernando Borrero, Derrick Esquibel, Aaron Tenorio, Artemisio Romero Y Carver, and Nayeli Solis
Paul & Roxanne