This past weekend I spent time in training to recruit and lead Civil Non-violent Disobedience in the State of Colorado. I am really excited for the opportunity to be part of a large group of American’s who are standing up to protect the future of our planet. This type of activity, while not something new to the American scene; is something I have not participated in before. For me, it’s a bit overwhelming to think that I will be joining the ranks of American Citizens who, because of conscience, chose to take a stand in a nonviolent fashion to stand up for injustices actively occurring on American soil. Most Americans know the story of Rosa Parks, a woman of African descent, who sat on a bus in a seat in 1955 that she wasn’t authorized to sit on because of the color of her skin. Her story is part of the history of the Civil Rights Movement, a time period in American history where many took to the streets to participate in making a statement. The focus was to bring focus to unjust laws in a way that was considered dignified, and worthy of media attention.
Fast forward 50 years. The same media that represented the values of America as wholesome and pure, has changed the focal point to one where active discussion of violence has become a part of daily life. Instead of positive news stories about the good things people are doing in their lives – stories about the worst of humanity’s behaviors unto one another take precedence. These stories are distractions which often do not include the ways in which private corporations, focusing on profit margins, continue to promote or participate in devastating actions upon our planet. These actions range from maintaining unhealthy manufacturing processes that have increased our atmospheric CO2 levels to dangerous planetary levels, to encouraging consumption patterns that are killing our oceans with plastic pollution. Environmentally, humanity has been extremely careless about our methods of progress and have, in many ways, developed methods of extracting and utilizing natural resources that are permanently scarring our planet.
I mourn frequently for this one Earth that I get to live on. I feel like people look at me like a lunatic as I take oil created plastic and move it from garbage cans to recycling bins. People are often offended as I communicate with them their thoughtless methods of consumption, feeling no need to take ownership of the state of Planetary Affairs they are actively contributing to the destruction of. This is why I took the Pledge of Resistance against the Keystone XL pipeline. This pipeline is designed to take some of the dirtiest sand on our planet, know as Tar Sand, and convert it into a fluid product to be pumped across our nation as an international export. The goal is to access this product in Canada, ship it across the United States, then refine it in Texas and export it to Asia – that is they want to export the excess product. Truth is that Tar Sand gasoline is already being consumed in states like Colorado without much knowledge by the average consumer.
And this is why I went to the Action Leader training for these upcoming nonviolent resistance. I am grateful these organizations: The other 98%, Rainforest Action Network, and Credo Action Network banded together to provide a wide variety of training exercises to help prepare me to lead active resistance against the KXL Pipeline. Please take some time to learn more about this important topic, sign the Pledge of Resistance and become one of the many that will tell President Obama that this isn’t the type of change we signed up for!