An Urgent Message from Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.
Our generation faces the greatest moral and political crisis in human history. Will we take the steps necessary to avert catastrophic global warming or will we doom our children to a new Dark Ages in a world that is biologically and economically impoverished and defined by ever diminishing quality of life. According to the grimmest forecasts, extreme global warming could give us a future where erratic and chaotic weather, rising sea levels, and melting snowpack usher in an epic of drought, crop failure, famine, flood and mass extinctions -- and the political instability that invariably accompanies dwindling resources. Millions of environmental refugees uprooted by these calamities will challenge the existence of democracy, freedom, justice and human dignity in every corner of the globe. Our grandchildren may look longingly at our era as the apex of civilization and human progress.
This all may sound to some like absurd exaggeration, but climate change is real and you don’t need a weatherman to know which way the mercury is already headed. The evidence is all around us – the polar ice caps, permafrost and glaciers are already disappearing faster than any of the early models could predict. Fresh water supplies are dwindling and deserts are growing. Oceans are rising, violent and unpredictable storms are ruining our coasts. Some island nations are already disappearing. Coral reefs and their fish populations are dying, worldwide. Unprecedented heat waves are already killing tens of thousands. Fires and endless droughts are already decimating vast expanses of once productive agricultures and timber lands. We are already experiencing mass extinctions and animals and plants are altering their behaviors to adapt to the rapidly changing climate. Disease organisms are expanding their ranges. The scientific debate is over except among a few polluter-financed junk scientists and ideologically blinded flat earthers.
There is good news. First, we have the technology to avert catastrophic global warming. We only need to muster the political will. We must require our leadership in Washington to once again mobilize our country’s scientific and technological capacity – the way America did to win World War II against the Nazis in 1945, to put a man on the moon in 1969, and to fix the ozone crisis in 1988. Today, we need a Apollo project to eliminate greenhouse gas emissions, we need our leadership to muster America’s capacity for invention and innovation, our entrepreneurial energies and our willingness to sacrifice --and deploy our invigorated nation to rescue human civilization.
Second, all the actions we must take to avert this global warming, are things America ought to be doing anyhow to reduce our dependence on foreign oil, our entanglement with petty dictators, our vulnerability to price shocks on the international oil markets, and to improve our national security, modify our trade deficits, reduce our national debt, stimulate our economy, create new jobs, and give our children clean air and water, robust health and safer, more wholesome communities. Immediate dramatic action on global warming will restore America’s global leadership and our moral authority among the nations of earth.
We are asking you to help us express your own commitment to stop global warming through a single act of community – a giant petition drive that we call the “Stop Global Warming Virtual March on Washington.” Over the next year, we will mobilize millions of Americans to join our march and make their personal commitment known by joining together to urge Washington to begin taking the steps necessary to derail global warming.
Our mandate to stop global warming transcends politics. It is a moral imperative. The battle to save the planet is the ultimate human rights struggle and, as with America’s civil rights movement, the first steps must be to mobilize citizens to remind our elected leaders of their moral obligation. Global warming is a theft of our children’s future. It is criminal and sinful. If we fail to take action, both our children and our divine creator will certainly have the right to ask us some very difficult questions. Please do your part – join the march and give us the chance to make your voice heard.