By Guest Writer Julia Worcester
I am an Environmental Studies major and I am ashamed of the modern environmental movement.
The mainstream environmental movement, growing out of John Muir’s protectionism, Gifford Pinchot’s sustainable use, and Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring, is stereotypically white and upper middle class. Unfortunately, these stereotypes are not too far from the truth. I have met too many white environmental activists who think Black Lives Matter marches, fighting for justice in Palestine, or LGBT organizing may be ‘noble’ causes but are ultimately a waste of time if they take someone away from environmental organizing. This is sickening.
By the Mount Holyoke Climate Justice Coalition
Mount Holyoke Climate Justice Coalition by the numbers:
4 years active
400+ hours of work
1,049 students voted yes to divest from fossil fuels
1 trustee working for the fossil fuel industry
Hundreds of student organizations at American colleges and universities are working to take our future back from the fossil fuel industry. More than 500 fossil fuel divestment campaigns, which also include countries, cities, churches, and nonprofits, have removed $3.4 trillion from the fossil fuel industry. This activism is alive and well at Mount Holyoke.
By August Burg '17
***Trigger Warning – discussion of sex/genitals, mentions of assault/rape
Despite going to a public school in a small conservative town in Massachusetts, I received a decent sex education in my sophomore year of high school. I got a chart that explained the different types of contraceptives and their effectiveness, as well as getting quizzed on anatomical diagrams of the penis and vulva. We watched Juno to talk about teen pregnancy, and even Philadelphia, which deals with AIDS and actual gay people. We didn’t get shown scare-tactic pictures of genitalia infected with STIs. And we only learned about abstinence in the context of it being an “option for safer sex.”
By Sabine Rogers
Although the 24-hour news cycle may promote a very different perspective, I believe the international crisis most in need of our attention, which we are most capable of changing, exists here - in our homes and communities - in the United States. This is a crisis of consumption, pollution, waste, and a lifestyle that rests firmly upon those pillars. It is about a simultaneous dependence on and disregard for our surroundings, and the profound impact this has on ecological systems from local to global scales.
Humans have an extraordinary capacity to shape the world. In the 200,000 some odd years that we’ve been around, people have manipulated and changed the environments around them. But today, there are more of us and we are taking more from the planet, faster than it can be replenished, with fatal consequences.