Chicago’s Climate Strike

By Julie Abelson and Eiman Navaid

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Friday, Sept. 20, marked the beginning of climate change awareness week, and all over the world, there were marches demanding major change from politicians to save the Earth and take action against climate change. These marches were inspired by 16-year-old activist, Greta Thunberg, who has been a prominent figure in the fight to bring awareness to the issue of climate change.

Chicago had their own march to fight for the well-being of the planet, organized by Illinois Youth Climate Strike. At 11 am, thousands of students and adults alike marched the streets of Chicago, beginning in Grant Park and ending across the street from the Federal Plaza. In addition, various construction workers in Chicago around the area of the march made sure to show their support as well by placing their own sign on their cranes while working.

Activists marched the streets with an array of signs chanting various sayings such as “Hey hey, ho ho, climate change has got to go” and “show me what democracy looks like! This is what democracy looks like!”

Activist Simone Eby was concerned mostly for the chance of survival for humans.

“I go to Glenbard East High School, and I’m a junior. I came out here because I think climate change is such a prevalent issue and if we don’t do something about it, we’re all going to die,” Eby stated.

Activist John Hines shared a similar perspective on the purpose of marching.

“I honestly decided to come because climate change is the greatest issue my generation will face. I feel that it’s important to do something because if we don’t do something, this will be the fate of us. We will go extinct,” Hines said.

Activist and father Scott Harman had a slightly more personal view, revealing that he was protesting for the future well-being of his infant son.

“I came because I have a 21-month old son and this is the only thing saving his future. Something needs to be done. I brought my son because it’s important for him to see who we are actually fighting for,” Harman stated.

Regardless of the reasons behind why they were marching, all activists shared the same goal: to make sure that the leaders of the world take action at the United Nations Climate Change summit taking place on Monday, September 22.