If Climate Change is a ‘Threat’ Mr. Biden, Then Please Treat it Like One.

Fight climate change like the crisis that it is.

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Photo via Joe Biden on Instagram

With scientists now telling us we have twelve years to get on the right track before irreparable damage is done to our planet and we have over one million species on the brink of extinction, there’s no doubt that climate change will be a central focus of the 2020 democratic primary season. Resolutions like the Green New Deal have also contributed to the conversations about the need for bold action, and have succeeded in moving the conversation to the left.

Of course, at this early stage we are already seeing how that doesn’t necessarily mean every candidate will take it as seriously as others.

When it comes to addressing the climate change, democratic frontrunner Joe Biden’s campaign website says:

“Climate change threatens communities across the country, from beachfront coastal towns to rural farms in the heartland. We must turbocharge our efforts to address climate change and ensure that every American has access to clean drinking water, clean air, and an environment free from pollutants,”

In spite of that relatively strong language, Joe Biden and his team are drafting a “middle ground” policy proposal to combatting the climate crisis, which according to sources will likely just bring the U.S. back in to the Paris Climate Agreement, and reestablish regulations that were in place in 2016.

You call climate change a threat Mr. Biden, so why don’t you treat it like one?

Mr. Biden if your house was on fire, would you simply put out half the fire? If your basement was flooded, would you only get rid of half the water? If your body was riddled with cancer, would you only take half the necessary treatments? If your country and your citizens were under attack, would you only fight back with half the effort needed to protect them?

My guess is no, you wouldn’t.

Mr. Biden is compromising on our environment and the future of our planet before anyone even has the chance to negotiate. My generation and the generations coming up behind us do not have the luxury of a middle ground approach to dealing with this crisis. The Democratic base is clearly not interested in milquetoast half measures when it comes to the future of our planet and all the incredible life that exists here. Not only does this approach give the impression that Biden is wildly out of touch, it highlights his position of incredible privilege, and the fact that he will likely go unaffected by the havoc that climate change will unleash on this planet in years to come.

Frankly, I do not care if Mr. Biden calls climate change a threat. What I’m interested in is how he and other candidates plan on dealing with it. Words mean absolutely nothing in this context, and it’s clear that when it matters most Biden’s actions fall far short. It is endlessly frustrating that even when it comes to matters as serious as the future of our planet, the democratic base has to beg their politicians to represent our best interests.

Mr. Biden has the power to do something.

He has the power to be a leader in this movement, and frankly it’s not only disappointing, but devastatingly predictable that he’s made the decision not to. This is something that we absolutely cannot let go. This is a nonstarter, and it’s up to the power of the people and our grassroots movements to hold him and his team accountable. Our planet and the beauty of the life that exists here is so precious, and we can’t afford to continue to take it for granted all in the name of corporate profits.

Lauren is a writer & leftist with analysis on topics related to politics & policy. She can be reached at LaurenMartinchek@gmail.com or Twitter @xlauren_mx

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