They say this is a civil rights movement. They say we are witnessing the beginning of something. They say the mass mobilisation act of civil disobidience (otherwise very close to having been cancelled) will be the biggest march in our time.
I participate. I volunteer. I make these videodiaries for Danish Newspaper Information. Like this one below.
It was from the demonstrations at the Grand Palais. Large companies had bought themselves the right to display (in an exhibition) how supposedly “environmental friendly” they are (these are some of the worst polluters in the world)
Because of the state of emergency here in France it has become, as you know, illegal to protest. What is happening here and what I think we will see more of in the future is pop up demonstrations and guerilla activism. We are fragmented and not allowed to gather so what has been going on for the last days have been a multitude of small and quick demonstrations, flooding the streets.
These two images are from what happened at Grand Palais. I sense a lot of fear in the people. But I also see a lot of courage.
We are taking back space in the city, demanding that our voice be heard. Everytime the police learns about a demonstration they show up in a hundred vans, fully armed like soldiers, here a demonstrant is being taken down…
This demonstration was actually legal because the planners called it a “parade”. It´s a funny thing with the state of emergency because football games, concerts (and parades) are not illegal- only political demonstrations and manifestations. It feels odd. That the people is not allowed to express anything political.
One way the get around that fact is to dress up like polarbears and just walk around in the streets. This guy was on a break.
Or by placing art in the streets.
This demonstration, below, was not allowed though. It was a pop up demonstration/flash mob/guerilla activism kind of thing in front of the Louvre (which is actually sponsored by two major oil companies… the protest was about how polluters are allowed to “greenwash” or “artwash” there brands and the problematic in official institutions allowing them to do this)
Walking home last night I walk into this. These are people representing the Alaskan salmon who faces extinction in front of the metro of Saint Michel.
And then off course there are all the meetings, events, workshops, debates and debriefings.
And the friends and connections I make. The climate summit is in many ways, I think a practical example of network theory, what happens is that lots of smaller clusters are coming together, information is not being distributed from one central site or organization (which can be both annoying and not very wellcoming to strangers or people who come here alone. These are negative sides, the positive sides is that by organizing this way we become flexible, able to improvise and quick)
My acces to information is somewhat coincidental but then at the same time I do sense a high level of syncronicity. I don´t know if it is because I have lived 4 years in the forest that I can tune in to the coincidences as I do (randomly just being at the right places at the right times) but I think that it somehow might be related to the forest.
I know it dosn´t make sense.
It´s just something I feel.
The other night I ran into a lobbyist working inside the COP21. It was late in the evening and he was a little bit drunk. I asked him about a lot of stuff what really stuck with me was the way he kept saying that we are not dealing with the deeper issue here, we are not even question the PREMISE of all of this political work, the fact is, he said, that we have to lower our living standards…. and nobody talks about this.
Did he have hope in relation to what the COP could accomplish?
I don´t know.
I don´t know if I have hope myself. I just think something is happening here… I´m tuning into it, I´m witnessing.
Yesterday Monique Besten arrived to Paris, she has been walking all the way from Barcelona to here you should really check out her blog.
We are not urbanites. We are the wildings.
Now we walk together.
Sharing the knowledge and the pamphlets being distributed underground
What´s happening. Where?
I can tell you one thing that is going to happen.
It was not sure that this was going to happen. For the longest while we didn´t know but now a coaliation of the major environmental organisations have come together for an act of mass mobilisation civil disobidience. This is a historic desision and I think it marks the second (or third or fourth or tenth) phase of environmentalism, making the transition to a full blown civil rights movement: the decision to practice civil disobidience in the face of injustice.
It will happen at the 12. At a so far secret location.
I will be there.
Because I´m a mother you know.