My dad and I went to the Climate March in NYC today. The day started with a hazy overcast and stayed humid for most of the day. Driving into Secaucus Train Station, we didn’t see many people going into the city and we thought the turn out was not as we hoped. As soon as the train came closer, we saw more and more people step onto the platform.
Once we arrived in Penn Station, we made our way to the subway and once we saw the platform for the A train, we knew we were wrong in thinking no one cared enough to show up for this monumental event. Throngs of people were everywhere. Although everyone was told to go to 86th street for the end of the line-up, we decided to take the express A train uptown and get off on 59th Columbus Circle so we could see the procession as it was coming down the street.
What we saw brought a tear to my dad’s eye. I got chills. People were everywhere. The march was led by the Indian tribes and as we watched people go by, we couldn’t believe the diversity. There were people from every walk of life and every sector of society. Turns out no matter what your background, we are ALL affected by climate change. Not only was there a diversity of people, but a plethora of different causes- everything from Mountain Top Removal protestors to labor unions and a young girl with a Save the Bees sign. People held signs saying a multitude of things. My favorite sign of the day was one that said We Are Just Borrowing This Planet. There is no Planet B after all.
We marched down 6th Ave and I thought it fitting that we were marching down Avenue of the Americas. The problem is not just an American one though, as evidenced by all of the Climate Marches taking place across the globe today. The air was filled with a palpable joy and every way you looked someone was beaming. My dad and I were so excited for the entire day. We marched along some people who were playing music and chanting and wandered down the line, turning on 42nd street when the parade of people turned to march across the city. It was unreal.
We saw helicopters above us and it made the hair on my arms stand up because I knew that meant that the media was listening. The march was largely put together on social media and the internet; the mainstream media did not cover anything about it happening today – until they couldn’t ignore us anymore. The people have spoken, at least the 310,000 amazing people that showed up today. It was an amazing turnout and I’m so proud to have been a part of what is hopefully going to be an incredibly important moment in history.