DES MOINES, IA. – In a marked escalation from the September 20th climate strikes, young people across the U.S. are sitting-in at the offices of establishment Democrats across 20 states who have yet to back the Green New Deal. In Des Moines, Bernie Sanders joined the climate strikers this morning outside of the Iowa Capitol building. In South Bend, 70+ young people marched to Mayor Pete Buttigieg’s office demanding a Green New Deal for the city.
“You’re seeing planting seasons decline, and harvests decline, because farmers cannot grow crops when their fields are underwater or when they have drought. We’re looking not only in Iowa, not only in the Midwest, not only in America—we’re looking all over the world about a serious crisis in food production,” Bernie Sanders said. “That’s the bad news.” He continued to say, “But here is the good news. If we have the courage to take on the fossil fuel industry and other special interests, if we have the courage to pass a Green New Deal, we can create up to 20 million good-paying jobs transforming our energy system.”
“We need a Green New Deal. All these other watered down ideas are a waste of time,” said Wally Mazon, 25, a Sunrise organizer in Iowa. “When my people from the LGBTQ community are under attack, when people can’t get healthcare, when people can’t vote, I can no longer live in a world of apathy on the part of our government. The Green New Deal is about fighting for the world we should be living in, but was stolen from us by a handful of greedy people.”
Sit-ins are underway at the offices of Rep. Axne in Iowa, Gov. Charlie Baker in Massachusetts, Rep. Chris Pappas in New Hampshire, and the Asheville City Council in North Carolina, with more to come throughout the day. Young people are also staging die-ins and banner drops in major cities including Chicago and Houston.
“I can’t trust the political establishment that’s been asleep at the wheel to fight for my future, or to fight for my human right to clean air, clean water, a livable wage, or an equal opportunity at life,” said Mona Abrahri, 23, a field organizer with the Sunrise Movement in Iowa. “For years, a greedy few have bought off our politicians and pitted us against each other on racial and economic lines at the expense of our futures—and today, we are here to say enough. I’m out here today fighting for a Green New Deal, and we’re not gonna stop until we’ve won.”