Swedish Teen Fights For An End To Climate Change

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Swedish Teen Fights For An End To Climate Change

Kassidy Haggard, National and World News

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        Greta Thunberg, a 16-year-old Swedish girl,  is fighting for the environment and a “bright and wonderful future” for herself, as well as everyone else. 

       Many people think that she is brave for being only 16 and standing up for what she believes in so publicly. However,  many others think that she is being used by her parents so they can use her age as a way to avoid criticism for their own political agenda and movements. Earlier this year, on Facebook, Greta confronted those who made these claims and posted, “there is no one ‘behind’ me except for myself. My parents were as far from climate activists as possible before I made them aware of the situation.” 

      Despite being someone so young who is fighting for change, she still receives a lot of criticism from officials, such as Donald Trump, who Thunberg tends to disagree with quite a bit.  In response to one of Trump’s tweets, which were meant to be a mockery of Greta, she began referring to herself as a girl who is “looking forward to a bright and wonderful future”. Greta does not shy away from arguments with anyone and is not afraid to stand her ground when it comes to what she believes in. It is for that reason that many people–especially the younger generation–have been looking up to her. 

      Her political activism has placed her in the running for a Nobel PrizeThose who receive the Nobel Prize are not only awarded with a medal and a diploma, but they are also rewarded prize money, which adds up to around $986,000 U.S. dollars today. Several people have received the reward,  and if Greta wins the prize, she will be the youngest to have ever been awarded it. 

        On Monday, Greta called out global leaders at the  United Nations climate summit and is demanding they take action to combat the drastically changing climate. She was very passionate about these leaders taking action to help the environment, and called them out on empty promises, stating, “You have stolen my dreams and my childhood with your empty words.” Statements like these have made many people aggravated, and Greta received backlash after this summit took place. 

        Due to this backlash, a video was made by Humphries. In this video there were several people talking, saying things such as “She’s making the end of the world sound like it’s the end of the world”, and “I’m a middle-aged man…I get irrationally angry at a Swedish girl who wants to save the planet.” The video became very popular for the creative way it responded to the backlash Greta was receiving. 

        Climate change is ruining the lives of young people in more ways than one. It is threatening the future of young people who do not have a stable and thriving world to grow up in.  Greta Thunberg is in the spotlight right now, from the possibility of her winning a Nobel Prize, to her arguments with U.S. President Donald Trump, to her appearance at the UN climate summit. Greta is not letting the hate, backlash, or pressure stop her. Instead, she is not backing down and has continued to be vocal to try to get the world to understand this sense of urgency. The earth is in a dire crisis, and if there is any hope of saving our planet, action needs to be taken.