I was lucky enough to participate in the People’s Climate Change March in Washington D.C. this past weekend. For me, climate change is probably the issue I feel most strongly about. Listening to the science and predictions of what is to come if nothing is done, I knew that this would be the march I couldn’t miss. I am still a somewhat shy activist, but just booking the ticket to D.C. left me feeling empowered. Ultimately, I can’t sit by and do nothing. If the predictions for our planet do in fact come true (which to be clear, I fear they will), I want to be able to tell Gavin that I tried, that I did all I could to help save our home. I truly believe that regardless of your political views, saving the planet and the resources we have left should be a top priority. Let’s face it, what are jobs, the economy, and healthcare going to matter when we have no breathable air or clean water?
So off we went to Washington. Ironically or perfectly enough, the weather decided to provide the perfect example of our planet’s warming, hitting 93 degrees in late April. (Just for comparison, the average temperature in D.C. at the end of April tends to be in the low 80s. ) So we readied our signs and mentally prepped for the extreme heat.
Lucky for us, the march was extremely well organized. There were bathrooms and water stations at the beginning and at the end of the march. There was a text message system that provided participants with updates throughout the day and also gave you the option to send your zip code in to get help continuing the work of the march in your home state.
There were many different groups represented in the march including indigenous tribes, parents, teachers, scientists, activists, and groups like the Sierra Club. Leonardo Dicaprio and Jacque Cousteau’s son Jean- Michel were even in attendance. Being from the south, it’s not always easy to find like minded voters, so it was amazing to be surrounded by 199,999 other people who were just as concerned about the environment as I am.
The march started near the Capital building and wound its way to the front of the White House. Once the March had surrounded the White House, march participants staged a brief sit in, clapping out 100 heartbeats collectively.
While there were many chants started throughout the march, none to me was as powerful as the entire march chanting “Shame, Shame, Shame,” as we marched by Trump Tower.
Seeing the creativity of the marchers signs was also a highlight. Here are a few of my favorites:
My top take away from my first march experience is to stay educated and take action. If an issue matters to you, call your representatives! Make your voice heard. I know I will continue to fight and resist in what ever small and large ways I can for my future and for my son’s future.