Week 4: Migrant Justice is Climate Justice

Migrant justice is climate justice. Fighting militarism is at the core of achieving both.

Interventionism is an act of military, political, or economic intervention by a country, such as military invasion, election meddling, or trade sanctions, intended to influence and/or control another country. Decades of U.S. interventionism has destabilized economies and societies—contributing to the conditions of poverty, instability, and violence that drives migration towards the United States. 

Climate change amplifies the crises of poverty and violence already impacting communities and regions of the world. The impacts of climate change—like extended drought and crop failures—not only increase political instability, but also push people around the world to migrate from home to more stable environments. More than 140 million people are expected to be displaced by climate change in the coming decades. Recent climate migration modeling indicates that while migration will rise every year regardless of how the climate changes, the amount of migration increases substantially as the climate does. 

The United States is responsible for a quarter of the historical greenhouse gas emissions that cause climate change in the atmosphere today and thus owes a debt to displaced people around the world. And yet, the United States has characterized climate migrants as “security threats” and invested unprecedented amounts in border fortification to keep them out. Both the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Pentagon have cited the climate crisis to justify increased border militarization and the deportation of immigrants.  

Meanwhile, like water protectors at Standing Rock, those who stand up against corporate polluters are often met with a militarized response to suppress resistance and protect fossil fuel companies’ bottom line. In fact, police foundations across the U.S. regularly receive funding from oil and gas companies, private utilities, and financial institutions. Violent militarism is what keeps an extractive economic system that exploits people and the planet, in operation. If we don’t divest from militarism, we can’t build the kind of healthy, living-economy we need to stay safe and care for each other and our planet. 

Call to Action:

Sunrise Movement is a movement of young people working to stop climate change, win racial justice, and create millions of good jobs through a Green New Deal. 

We’re less than two months away from the most important election of our lifetimes. If you’re freaking out, you’re not alone.

We have the chance to win big – electing Green New Deal champions to Congress, turning out our peers in states where the youth vote can defeat Trump, and all the while building our movement to be ready to bring in the decade of the Green New Deal. But it’s gonna take all of us, giving the time that we can, to get us there.

That’s why we’re making a small ask of everyone who doesn’t already hold a role in the movement – two hours a week, from now until the election. That’s it. If you have more, you can give more, but what matters is that you show up.

Get involved: https://www.sunrisemovement.org/victory-squad/

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