Quiet Protest

Extinction Rebellion quiet protest 23 February 2020 in Cambridge.

They marked out an area and sat down, mostly with eyes closed, while shoppers passed by.

I asked a man handing out leaflets what he thought of the protesters who had dug up the grass at Trinity College. He said he wouldn’t do it but the protest attracted a lot of media attention. He said 3,000 people had joined in the UK in the last week, I wasn’t sure how much was attributable to the Trinity College protest and I said yes but the media attention had been of the wrong kind. I said people I had spoken to had felt distanced by the action.

He was a thoughtful man and he seemed torn over defending and condemning the actions of the other members of ER. We talked about pollution and its relation to climate change.

How different from the Trinity College protest. I didn’t feel a strong motivation to join them, but how could I feel anything other than sympathy and fellow-feeling for the people sitting there.