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Dec. 8, 2019 | Sunday
Editorials and Opinions
Editorial: Kudos to NOTL's young climate activists
Hazel Norris and Molly Shara. (File photo)

Kudos and congratulations to Hazel Norris and Molly Shara, two 13-year-old activists from Niagara-on-the-Lake, who have decided they want their municipality to take the climate crisis seriously.

The St. Michael Catholic School students are vowing to continue monthly “climate strikes” outside the NOTL Town Hall.

Inspired by young Swedish environmentalist Greta Thunberg and others, they want our municipality to declare a climate emergency, a largely symbolic act but one that would show our civic leaders are on board with protecting the planet.

No, showing concern about the environment is not actually an area of responsibility for a municipal government. But neither are many other feel-good declarations, flag-raisings and other actions that our town council, and numerous other municipalities, enact regularly.

We’re not putting down those declarations and flag-raisings – they are important to the community. So is our environment.

No doubt for writing this there will be predictable feedback and comments from the anti-carbon tax, “climate change is a government scam” and “there’s no climate crisis” crowd. We expect it.

But it was really sad over the past few weeks when we posted online stories about these two young
NOTLers and watched in short order as the so-called adults in the room felt it was OK to mock and put down these children.

It was ironic, too, that as some of the adults were dismissing the students’ efforts and telling the kids to go to school, the grownups’ postings contained silly, Grade 5 level spelling and grammar errors. Oops.

Yea to Hazel Norris and Molly Shara. Maybe they don’t have all the answers. Doesn’t matter. They’re trying to do something about it.

So ... some yays, and a nay.

Nay to those who choose to mock and squawk.

Yea to Royal Canadian Legion Branch 124, cadets, emergency personnel and all those who marched in Remembrance Day ceremonies in Old Town, Queenston and elsewhere around the country on Monday.

Yea also to everyone else who braved the snowy weather to pay tribute to those who fought for freedom.

Yea to Music Niagara, NOTL’s own very special music festival, which had a record year at the box office this past summer. Kudos to board chair Margot Hickson and the entire Music Niagara team that has worked hard for years to put this festival on the map. And now, they’re expanding, with a 10-day ChoralFest kicking off this Saturday with the famed Elmer Iseler Singers at the Niagara United Mennonite Church in Virgil.

editor@niagaranow.com

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