Thank you, Telluride School Board and Mr. Hubbard for speaking up for climate action! 1st Out-of-State. The groundswell is coming. . .
Telluride, Colorado---Commitment to Climate Change Action Resolution
More later, but for now let me just say that at some point we should expect a groundswell. Educators across Sonoma County, and now the country, know that we cannot remain silent while our lack of common-sense national climate policies threatens the well-being and future success of generations of children.
Educators can speak up with an organized, non-partisan, respectful, and forceful voice to help break the logjam in DC. We do not expect anyone to abandon liberal or conservative values or philosophies. We do expect our leaders to be guided by the same foundations upon which school institutions are built: science, critical thought, belief in objective truth, a coherent moral system, and progress towards justice. We have enough imagination, pride, dignity, and patriotism to see the benefits of American leadership on the issue of climate change.
Students, parents, and educators, we can use resolutions---student council, school board, PTA, and teacher's union---to clearly assert our expectation that all leaders at every level should embrace common-sense American values and attitudes towards climate change.
It is totally appropriate for there to be robust debates about the best policies and solutions to climate change. It is totally inappropriate and inexcusable that such debates are not taking place in our most important public forum---the halls of Congress.
Educators, we should hold our leaders, at every level, to the same high standards we hold our students and ourselves. As educators, we believe in people's ability to learn and grow if they are held to high expectations and given honest feedback. We are in the business of helping people become their better selves.
We can apply this principle to leaders at every level. A small minority of leaders is currently leading our nation down a path that endangers our students and future generations. Here in Sonoma county, we have already seen firsthand the connection between climate disengaged leaders and harm to our children. Our kids have already suffered and the longer we abide climate disengaged leaders at any level, the greater and the more pervasive the harm will grow. Fortunately, by speaking up and sending clear, unambiguous social and political signals, we can help leaders evolve. We can speak up---through resolutions---to provide this feedback for the good of the country, the climate, our leaders, and our children.
Kai Guthrie is a ninth grade student at Credo High in Rohnert Park, a Citizens' Climate Lobby volunteer, and one of the founders of Schools for Climate Action campaign.