Guest Article: Climate March
By Sally C. Kane
In a time when our nation stands to lose agencies that provide environmental protections, denial of proven science realities loom over us, public servants fail to monitor safe water sources and corporations continue exploiting natural resources in the name of economic growth, and the effects of climate change are experienced world-wide, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed and angry, raising the questions, where do we begin and what can I do?
A group of local folks, spearheaded by Dawn Bushhouse, responded by creating a local climate awareness event. Over 100 concerned citizens from a 60-mile radius, gathered on April 29 at Newaygo's Brooks Park for...
...a Rally and March. The Newaygo County March tied to other Climate Awareness Marches held Nationwide the same day.
Displaying passionate and colorful signs, Marchers gathered in a festive atmosphere, for an opening Rally in front of the Amphitheater. Back dropped by the American flag, participants pledged to a non-violent and respectful event then sang America the Beautiful, led by Sandra Bernard. Five speakers, Sally Kane, Dave Vandenbelt, Mary Frens, Mark Petz, Linda Ritz-White and Steve Potter, addressed a comprehensive set of issues, all calling for stewardship of our home on Mother Earth.
Some thoughts shared by speakers:
“Why do we March?...We march for a collective unity, across economic and political lines, with a commitment to work with environmental groups, lobby our representatives, and make our voices heard.”
“Climate change has been on our radar for years…one of the biggest catastrophes humans have created.”
“Denying science doesn’t work…(people see the truth.)
“Corporate greed and profit…” (have become the norm). “Keep focused on the issues,
“We no longer can take these matters for granted.”
“A new normal must include re-tooling…economic sustainability based on renewable energy…Nations like China, Denmark, Sweden and Costa Rica are way ahead of us.”
“It costs more to recycle…We need to educate the public…about recycling realities.”
“What about a nation that builds industry around recycling and repurposing?”
“What about retooling water infrastructure in all our cities?”
“Educate ourselves and our legislators…Environmental issue are vast and interconnected.”
From Earth Prayers:
“…O Lord, how long will it take before we awaken to what we have done?
How many waters must we pollute?
How many woodlots must we destroy?
How many forests must we despoil?
How much soil must we erode and poison…?”
“We don’t own the earth…we must care for her…she nourishes all life…We must thank and respect her,” said Steven Two Dogs Potter. He led the group in a thanksgiving Prayer.
Led by participants carrying the American Flag, an upbeat group marched around the Brooks Park city block, pausing to vigil at the stop light corner, then some proceeded down to the River walk and back through downtown Newaygo.
We marched to take action, to resist the denial and lies around us, to protect our planet and honor our home, to help build a new sustainable normal.
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