Tim DeChristopher: “Happy Birthday and thanks for the presents!”

November 18th is Tim DeChristopher’s Birthday. For those of you who don’t know Tim check out Outside Magazine’s October 2011 Story: “The Trials of Bidder 70.” In a nutshell, Tim is one of the original change agents and climate warriors. Tim showed us all, particularly those of us in the environmental moment, the power of PEOPLE to make change for the good, to stand up against big business and

Photo Credit: Peaceful Uprisings

corporate greed in the name of protecting our environment for us, and for future generations. Below is a copy of the birthday wishes I sent to Tim. For more information on Tim, his work and his legacy, as well as how to write Tim yourself, please visit Peaceful Uprising.

Dear Tim,

On the occasion of your Birthday, I want to send you good wishes and instead of giving you a present, THANK YOU for the present that you gave and keep giving to so many of us. You are a positive example and role model for the power of the individual. People need to be brave, to stand up and unmask the negative side of “big business” – the corruption and greed that often overshadows what should be instead an intrinsic need to look out for and after our planet, standing firm for our future and our children’s future.

I met you briefly this past June at the Netroots conference in Minneapolis. You have inspired me personally, and I believe so many others as well. We too are now ensuring that our voices are heard and our actions seen as we take a stand against fossil fuel interests and try to move our country and the world to a more sustainable energy future. I run a website and blog, ClimateMama where we try to help empower busy parents who want to learn more about the dangers we face from climate change and what each of us can do to change the crash course we are on with our environment.

Photo Credit: Sue Barr

I have an almost 14-year-old son and 12-year-old daughter whose future I see endangered by our thoughtless actions and refusal to fully recognize and address the damages we are causing. My children are too young to vote. I am voting for them and making sure that my politicians know that climate change is an issue they must address. At the same time, we need to move quickly and can’t always wait for the political process to catch up.

In August, I too was arrested for the first time in my life, as part of the Keystone XL pipeline protests, an action that is near and dear to me. I am originally from Alberta and had the opportunity this past summer to visit and see first hand the immensity of the tar sands project. Meeting you, hearing and seeing you speak so calmly and sure about what you did, all the while waiting to be sentenced and knowing you were going to have to go to jail, helped me make my decision that I could surely put myself on the line as well (in a much less difficult way than you did!) Know that we continue to “fight the fight” as people do feel embolden to take action and create “peaceful” uprising to take the “veil down” so we can see clearly the damage we are doing and the way forward.

My apologies that this letter has taken so long to get from my pen to paper and then on to you. Your actions on all of our behalves are so very appreciated as is your sacrifice and the unfair situation you now find yourself in. Please know that you remain an inspiration to so many – thank you for your present to all of us!

Best wishes on your birthday.


Harriet (aka Climate Mama!)

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