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Stop fueling the climate crisis

On June 13, 50 activists with Pennsylvania Action on Climate confronted the state Legislature to demand that it stop fueling the climate crisis. I was one of 10 PAC activists who entered the House Gallery and showered the House floor with $203 in $1 bills marked with “Bribe,” “Climate Action Now” and other messages. These communications were to put the spotlight on many legislators’ greed and responsiveness to big money interests while climate change continues to accelerate.

We chanted, “You take bribes, the planet dies,” and attempted to unfurl a large banner over the balcony with the same message. Capitol police ripped the banner from two activists’ hands. We were all forcibly removed from the chamber and two were arrested and charged with criminal trespass. The rest were escorted from the building and warned we would face the same charges if we reentered the premises.

I risked arrest because I’m concerned that the world is on the fast track to climate disaster. I spoke truth to power and put my body on the line on behalf of children, future generations and all nonhuman inhabitants of the planet. Demands to take action have been repeatedly ignored by our lawmakers in Harrisburg, many of whom are complicit because of their close ties with the fossil fuel industry. I felt compelled to do nonviolent direct action to compel them to work for all Pennsylvanians, not just energy company executives.

Douglas Mason

Chair Sierra Club Moshannon Group

Port Matilda

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