On Sunday, June 20th – Father’s Day in the USA – an intergenerational gathering of folks from across the country will set off for an 8 day walk from President Biden’s birthplace of Scranton, PA, culminating on June 28th in his hometown of Wilmington, DE; quite the Father’s Day present for a very powerful father!
The website for the 2021 Walk tells us that: “In 2013, a multi-generational group of climate activists walked from Camp David, Maryland to Washington, DC – their goal – to tell then President Obama and other policy makers that we must keep the majority of fossil fuels in the ground.
Now, in 2021, many of the same elders are being joined by young people concerned about the urgency of our climate crisis and are walking again to demand climate action from President Biden. While recognizing that President Biden has promised bold actions to address the climate crisis, his current proposals, while important, are inadequate to address the scope of our climate emergency.
By walking in the summer of 2021, the participants want to remind the Biden Administration and others that their love for their families and their futures requires a rapid, uncompromising transition away from the unhealthy, unsafe extraction and burning of fossil fuels while embracing renewable energy, especially solar and wind power. A $2-trillion Biden Administration infrastructure and climate action proposal is moving toward a vote in Congress, this summer. Those walking support a much stronger, more realistic approach in the Green New Deal/Thrive Agenda and the developing Red, Black, and Green New Deal promoted by the Movement for Black Lives.”
Below is a story by one of the walkers, Ted Glick – a good friend of ClimateMama and one of the Walk organizers. Ted wrote this post on May 28th:
Walking For Our Grandchild
By Ted Glick
A little more than three weeks from now, my wife Jane Califf and I will head west to Scranton, Pa. to join with others in the eight-day, 2021 Walk For Our Grandchildren and Mother Earth: Elders and Youth on the Road to Climate Justice. The Walk begins in Scranton on June 20, Father’s Day, and will end in Wilmington, De. on June 28. On that day we will take nonviolent direct action at a major corporate headquarters of Chase Bank, the world’s leading financial supporter of the fossil fuel industry.
Eight years ago I helped to organize the 2013 Walk For Our Grandchildren, from Camp David in Maryland to the White House via Harpers Ferry. That one ended with about 60 people being arrested at the offices of Energy Resources Management, the greenwashing company that did the KXL oil pipeline’s official environmental impact statement.
Many of the people who I met and walked with in 2013 ended up joining together the next year to take nonviolent direct action at the headquarters of FERC, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, out of which emerged the organization Beyond Extreme Energy. BXE is still going strong, supporting frontline groups fighting new fracked gas infrastructure and advocating with increasing effectiveness for FERC to be replaced by FREC, a Federal Renewable Energy Commission.
For Jane and me this year’s Walk will have one very big difference: as distinct from back then, today we are actual grandparents. Earlier this month, with the pandemic thankfully receding, we spent time in Montana with four month old grandson Rio and our son and daughter-in-law, and unsurprisingly, we fell deeply in love with him.
It helps to personalize why we are working and struggling and fighting, day after day, for a very different future than the one we are facing absent very big societal changes.
Please Visit Ted’s website to read his post in its entirety.
All are welcome to join for a day, an hour or the entire Walk. More information on the schedule and how to join can be found on the Walk website.
Check back with us and follow along on social media, as we and others report on the walkers events and updates under the hashtag #2021walkforourgrandchildren. If you are on Facebook, you can also keep up with the walkers on the Walk Facebook page here.
As Climate Mamas and Papas, we all find our own, unique and powerful ways to bring attention to the climate emergency and the urgency required to address it. Coming together with others who feel the same way as we do is something we have been missing greatly this past year as the global pandemic took hold. As we in the USA are coming out of the COVID 19 crisis, coming together, in person, to raise attention to the ongoing pandemic of the climate crisis feels right and powerful. We know many other parents and grandparents around the world would love to be joining us but are still in the midst and darkness of the Covid pandemic; we do this walk for them and because of them, their children, their grandchildren and of course, our Mother Earth. We at ClimateMama are honored to be supporters of the 2021 Walk for Our Grandchildren and Mother Earth. Please follow along, join in if you can, and also, if you are able to, please support the walkers along the way by donating here.