Greta Thunberg’s Emotional Speech and #FridaysforFuture Protests


By Juliana Lee , Staff writer

“You have stolen my dreams and my childhood with your empty words. And yet I’m one of the lucky ones. People are suffering. People are dying. Entire ecosystems are collapsing. We are in the beginning of a mass extinction, and all you can talk about is money and fairy tales of eternal economic growth. How dare you!” – Greta Thunberg at the United Nations’ Climate Action Summit in New York City on September 23. 

Greta Thunberg expresses the resentment and anger felt by many of the environmentally conscious youth today. She has put world leaders to shame for continuing to ignore the issue at hand, despite the crystal clear statistics that prove climate change will detrimentally impact the Earth. 

She accuses them of choosing their own monetary interests over the wellbeing of our future generations. The 16-year-old activist claims that if the world leaders are not willing to take action, the younger generations will unfortunately suffer the consequences. Through her emotions and accusations, Thunberg delivers a significant and passionate speech that will forever inspire and be remembered. 

Before her speech at the Climate Action Summit, Greta Thunberg led one of the many protests held on September 20th. The number of participants had begun to grow when Thunberg gained attention and made headlines for her own independent protest in front of the Swedish Parliamentary building. The global climate strike is named Fridays for Future, and the title represents why the prevention of climate change is so crucial for the planet’s youth. Its detrimental repercussions will ultimately affect them, and these protests are a way to voice growing concerns.

Beyza Beyazkan, a sophomore at Wayne Hills, gives her input on the global climate strikes, “It’s incredible how many people gathered for one shared cause, and it shows that with a strong will, people from all over the world can come together and unify.” 

Over 150 countries had participated in the strike and have broken its own record of the protest held on May 24th which had 130 countries. The international strikes’ contributors mostly consist of students from countries such as Belgium, Greece, Mexico, and South Korea. 

As more and more protests are being held, voices are being heard as there is a gradual increase in policies from the government to prevent major changes in Earth’s climate. For instance, regulations for companies regarding how much carbon can be emitted have been instituted. There is also a growth in the number of initiatives from major corporations, such as Amazon and Adidas, who vow to reduce the amount of waste produced from manufacturing.  

Overall, the youth’s persistent demands and calls for action, have had a major influence in on how climate change is being handled. With hope and determination, the younger generations will continue to lead a revolution and potentially stop climate change in the near future.