“Thousands upon thousands” marched in the Climate Strike in Edmonton on Friday the 18th of October 2019.
This Climate Strike was different than some of the other Canadian Climate Strikes as it was lead by the Indigenous People of Treaty 6 Territory. The fact that we all live on stolen land in Treaty 6 Territory was acknowledged at the beginning of the rally on the very steps of Colonial Power. These acknowledgments often seem like lip service, but it was acknowledged again by the guest star of the march Greta Thunberg herself. Her acknowledgment as well as the first was cheered by a diverse crowd of thousands upon thousands of marchers. The link between the Indigenous People who live on the front line of climate change and the solutions that will bring climate justice for all cannot be ignored.
The message of the march was clear. The people of Edmonton understand that our Government and Media have been capture by corporate interests. The windows of the Legislature did not have pro-oil posters in them as they did at the last big climate march. Instead, this time the windows of the Legislature where papered over so the Jason Kenney Conservative Government would not have to see the thousands upon thousands on hand to protest how this Conservative Government is handling our future interests. It could not be any more clear that the Government and Media do not represent the people they claim to work for so “We” must march in the streets to insist that they “Unite behind the science”, and do the right thing for everyone’s interest, over the interests of their corporate masters. Everyone’s future is at risk. Ignoring the problem and continuing with the status quo is no longer tenable. The people of Edmonton and the entire world know this to be true.
The corporate media was in full on propaganda mode and the Edmonton City Police showed that they where in on the game with an obviously low “Official” estimate of only 4,000 for the crowd size. The Edmonton Journal did not want to risk their credibility with such an obviously low and incorrect number and went with a crowd size estimate of twice that at 8,000. I am confident that the Journal’s estimate is also a low ball number to keep in line with their corporate political agenda. The organizers have an estimate of 10,000 to 12,000 people. I was there and I think that the organizers estimate are the most trustworthy.
The corporate media revved up the pro-corporate propaganda machine by down playing or completely ignoring the leadership role that the Indigenous People of Alberta played in the March. The Media tried to paint a false equivalence of maybe 20 people driving trucks and honking their horns to 10,000 plus people marching in the streets demanding Climate Justice for all. And finally, by blatantly trying to hide the true size of the crowd. Sadly, it seems that the CBC has been captured by corporate interests and is parroting the “approved” talking points. By making the same false equivalence, blindly going with the “official” crowd size, and shamefully not covering the leadership roll of the Indigenous People of Alberta in the Climate movement. It is a sign of the times that the information that you receive from the corporate media is ALWAYS passed through the corporate propaganda machine before you get to see it. Usually they are much more subtle in their attempts to control the information that you get to see. It seems that the Climate Justice movement has them rattled and the establishment is obviously making mistakes.
For example the Edmonton Journal tried to confuse the issue by publishing an article telling Greta Thunberg of all people to “do her homework on climate change”. Completely missing the point that no one needs to do homework on climate change because the science is in fact done. The point is that we must all unite behind the science to solve this emergency, and the status quo cannot continue.
Another good example is that Global News went with the bogus “official estimate” of 4,000 people and would only show aerial footage of the crowd well before most people had shown up and before anyone had started speaking. Watch it again and look to the steps of the Legislature. Then look at photos and footage from the ground when anyone was actually at the mic speaking.
It is clear that this is on our hands now, the powers that be will not give in without a fight. It has always been this way. It will take word of mouth, and people on the streets. “Nothing is impossible if enough people stand united”. “Never give up, we stand together”. Greta Thunberg said to conclude here speech on the steps of the Alberta Legislature Building.