Lusk Community College

Cool Down, Bro!

08-April-19
Cool Down, Bro!

It has been said many times before that young people of today are the last generation that can solve the ever-growing climate change problem. Some might say that climate action is out of our hands, but the student protest organised last Friday in Dublin City is evidence that young people will not go down without a fight. 2,000 people were expected to show up, which, in itself would be a rather impressive turnout. This number was quadrupled, with 8,000 people confidently making their voice heard outside the Dáil. If you doubt these students have a genuine concern for the state of our planet or believed they just wanted a day off school, the level of passion and urgency shown on Friday would have crushed those suspicions cannot be disputed.

Several countries all over the world took inspiration from a 16 year old girl, Greta Thunberg from Sweden. She became a world renowned in August 2018 when she started a school strike for climate action. Many other Swedish students followed suit, and Thunberg has gone on to host speeches at UN conferences. Her actions led to other school strikes in major cities such as New York, London and, of course, Dublin.

When we arrived at the march, there was already a very positive atmosphere, and it only got better. The main chant echoed on the day was “What do we want? Climate action!”, “When do we want it? Now!”. Among the various chants that were uttered, there were also many posters and signs on display that were made by students and teachers alike. Some were well worded and serious; “There is no planet B!”, and some were more on the simple side; “Cool Down, Bro” was probably my favourite that fits that category. I am proud (mainly) to say that the latter belonged to our very own Harry Smith.

As someone who is likely to be affected by climate change if radical changes aren’t made in the near future, it was refreshing to see the initiative shown by this generation in making life easier for ourselves and, more importantly, for future generations. It wasn’t so much the number of people who showed up that impressed me, but it was the demeanour of those taking part in it. Very few of the students I seen taking part hesitated in getting involved in proceedings. To be completely honest, I did not expect half of what I saw outside the Dáil on Friday afternoon, and although it is probably a very small event in terms of the issue in front of us, it’s given me a new lease of hope that we can tackle climate change.

Written by Ben Farrelly

3rd year member of Student Press Team

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