Students Take Action Against Climate Change


Kathryn Kaiser

Activists approach the Capitol.

Anna Johns, Staff Writer

“This is all wrong. I shouldn’t be up here. I should be back in school on the other side of the ocean”

Greta Thunberg, an environmental activist whose unrelenting passion has brought her to the UN floor and headlines of newspapers all around the world, opened with this statement to world leaders at the 2019 UN Climate Action Summit. Greta’s activism has inspired millions of students all around the world to strike, without exception to Minnesota, as seen by the astounding 3000 participants in this year’s September 20th strike.

Ella Johnson commented on the diversity of the speeches—ranging from songs performed by Native American youth to speeches from activists such as Isri Hirsi (daughter of Congresswoman Ilhan Omar)—referring to the march as a “cool, unified movement”.

Both Amanda Lee Molina ‘21, Mabel Chovan-Aziz ‘21 and Nora Cornell ‘21 (all members of the group of 9) expressed their surprise and inspiration in seeing such young kids (ages as young as 9, as Chovan-Aziz recalls) at the march. Nora Cornell expressed her shock at seeing them, stating, “There was a group of middle schoolers who were like ‘we should be in school right now’ and I was like, yeah, you should, like you have to learn long division, like what are you doing?” Amanda Lee Molina remarked on some of the kid’s signs recalling they were along the lines of ‘I’m going to die, are you willing to sacrifice my future?’. 

The three juniors’ shock makes sense; It’s odd to see elementary school kids actively participating in such immense and heavy issues when as high schoolers many of us haven’t fully formed opinions on those issues yet. Climate Change has easily become such an overwhelming and confusing problem that we often have to push out of our minds to get through the school day.

But, the climate strike has brought climate change to our doorstep—only a ten minute drive from our school—and this year it’s not less than a hundred people, but more than a thousand in our community overspilling the steps of the capital—the same steps that the Blake junior class crowded on to take their Junior Walk picture at the beginning of the year.

Kathryn Kaiser
Marchers made many signs and posters to support thier cause.

When asking Elle McCarty ‘21 what incentivized her to participate in the climate march, she reminded me of the immensity of climate change, stating, “It’s our entire world, it isn’t even just an aspect”.

No matter what side of the political landscape you are on or what your opinion is on climate change, movements such as the climate march remind us of the importance of remaining engaged and critical consumers of media, rather than scrolling past the uncomfortable issues in the news. The issue of Climate Change is dominating our world, and it’s time for each of us to make a decision on what part we’ll play in arguably one of the most significant global issues in our generation.