The 24th annual U.N. meeting of world leaders on climate change is over, and the star of the show was Swedish teenager Greta Thunberg.
My favorite lines:
“We have not come here to beg world leaders to care. You have ignored us in the past and you will ignore us again.”
“We have run out of excuses and we are running out of time.”
“We have come here to let you know that change is coming, whether you like it or not.”
Bottom line: This should be a history-changing speech. For a newsletter about taking courage to confront the most consequential problem in our history, I can’t imagine many people more courageous than Thunberg.
Here’s the thing, though — she was talking to you. Thunberg knows the U.N. recognized the need to take action on climate change almost 10 years before she was born, and she’s already tired as hell at literally everyone for not seeing how big of an emergency this is.
Ceding leadership roles to people who should be out building tree forts and practicing their dance moves with friends is a moral failing.
We can’t wait for Thunberg to grow up and become a CEO or a member of Sweden’s parliament. The whole reason her words are effective is that she shouldn’t have to be. We should have solved this problem before she was even born.
Thunberg and other quickly rising young voices found in the Sunrise Movement or Zero Hour are doing this because they have hope that YOU will wake up and do the right thing, like today.
Not tomorrow. Today. They don’t have time to waste to secure a future where they can just survive. That’s our job.
This story was originally published by Grist with the headline What teenager Greta Thunberg’s U.N. speech means for you on Dec 18, 2018.