I have a dream that the powerful take the climate crisis seriously. The time for their fairytales is over

(The Independent, 20 Sep 2019) In a highly anticipated speech in Congress after travelling half the way across the Atlantic by boat, Greta Thunberg urges US senators to learn from the sacrifices of Martin Luther King and other civil rights activists in the fight against climate change. Here is the transcript.

My name is Greta Thunberg, I am 16 years old and I’m from Sweden. I am grateful for being with you here in the USA. A nation that, to many people, is the country of dreams.

I also have a dream: that governments, political parties and corporations grasp the urgency of the climate and ecological crisis and come together despite their differences – as you would in an emergency – and take the measures required to safeguard the conditions for a dignified life for everybody on earth.

Because then – we millions of school striking youth – could go back to school.

I have a dream that the people in power, as well as the media, start treating this crisis like the existential emergency it is. So that I could go home to my sister and my dogs. Because I miss them.

In fact I have many dreams. But this is the year 2019. This is not the time and place for dreams. This is the time to wake up. This is the moment in history when we need to be wide awake.

And yes, we need dreams, we can not live without dreams. But there’s a time and place for everything. And dreams can not stand in the way of telling it like it is.

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The Independent, 20 Sep 2019: I have a dream that the powerful take the climate crisis seriously. The time for their fairytales is over