Thursday, 11 September 2008

Direct Action history in Maidstone

Non-violent direct action on climate change history was made in Maidstone yesterday with the acquittal of the Kingsnorth Six. Other green direct action has had similar grounds of lawful excuse to be found not guilty of criminal damage, but these seem to be against GM crops, arms and nuclear.

I hope Gordon Brown is worried. I think the question is what next? Al Gore couldn't understand why young people weren't besieging coal power stations across the world and I share this sentiment. Having just finished Mark Lynas's Six Degrees - a truly scary and well researched book detailing likely scenarios for each one degree rise in global average temperature - I suspect that young people would riot if they really new what trouble we were storing up for them over the next 40 years.

I don't want people to act out of fear, but the alternative to business as usual is so good that we have possibly the biggest carrots and sticks temping us all to go off in a green direction and yet the media and popular culture are wedded to stopping it.

Things are changing though. Even in the last few months noticable changes have happened. Yesterday I was at Maidstone West station and saw that the number of bicycles chained up has double in the last year. There are far more people cycling round town and people seem to be cutting back on consumption generally (just look at the recent fall in oil prices as consumption has dropped).

Let us hope that society is ready for a change of direction!

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