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Follow the lead of young people on fighting for climate change

The world is watching these young trailblazers. Hopefully, the world’s leaders will take decisive action.

Teen Activist Greta Thunberg Joins Climate Strike Outside The White House
Outside the White House, young environmental advocates participate in a strike to demand action on climate change on Sept. 13, 2019.
Sarah Silbiger/Getty Images

Over the past few years, we’ve witnessed an unprecedented level of civic engagement among youth.

It started with the March For Our Lives protest and subsequent movements led by the students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in the wake of a Florida school shooting that left 17 dead. More recently, we’ve seen Zero Hour, centered on climate change and environmental justice.

Students around the world are participating in school strikes. Fridays for Future calls for a more aggressive response to climate change from government and the international community. Teenagers are angry, frustrated, scared and worried. They are also motivated like never before.

The kids, it would seem, are not all right. And who can blame them?

We promised their generation that the world they will inherit will be better than the way we found it. When it comes to climate change, we have failed them. But it is not too late to at least stop the clock, if we cannot turn it back completely.

The Global Climate Strike to be held on Sept. 20 will be historic and momentous. It comes at a time when it is more important than ever to acknowledge the devastating consequences of climate change.

The world will be watching these young trailblazers and their adult allies. Hopefully, the world’s leaders will also take notice and take decisive action.

Many of these young activists are not even old enough to vote. Yet, they have still marched, protested, held school walkouts, demonstrated and used social media to inform and inspire.

Now, we must take their work one step further, using our voices and our votes to combat the climate crisis.

The fate of our planet depends on it.

Eleanore Dykes, Lake View

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A broken justice system

A good example of the dysfunction of the criminal justice system is eloquently outlined recently in the Sun-Times.

Here are the stories of Oscar Ocampo, paroled Aug. 16 and then arrested for stabbing his brother and killing his brother-in-law.

Karan Brown, arrested for criminal sexual assault, was a four-time convicted felon. Marcus Mondy, sentenced for assaulting a federal employee, also faces charges for the attempt murder of a woman who he pushed off a CTA platform. He has nine prior assault or battery convictions and 17 arrests.

Is there a problem here?

Robert Stasch, O’Hare