Wednesday, September 25, 2019

The Big Betrayal

On Monday, Greta Thunberg (left) delivered a stinging speech in the UN, telling governments that “you are still not mature enough to tell it like it is. You are failing us. But the young people are starting to understand your betrayal”. 

Days after millions of young people joined protests worldwide to demand emergency action on climate change, world leaders had gathered for the annual United Nations general assembly aiming to inject fresh momentum into efforts to curb carbon emissions. 

But the teenage Swedish activist predicted the summit would not bring forth any new plans in line with the radical cuts in greenhouse gas emissions that scientists say are needed to avoid catastrophic climate breakdown. 

“You have stolen my dreams and my childhood with your empty words”, a visibly emotional Thunberg said. 

“The eyes of all future generations are upon you. And if you choose to fail us I say we will never forgive you. We will not let you get away with this. Right here, right now is where we draw the line”. 

As Isabel Cavelier (right), a former climate negotiator for Colombia who is now senior adviser at the Mission 2020 climate group says: “There’s a big dissonance between every leader saying to Greta ‘we hear you’ and the commitments they are putting on to the table”. 

The US, Canada and Australia weren’t even there. In fact, the G20 countries are one huge disappointment. 

China offered nothing new. India mentioned commitments made in the past. It’s sad but there’s nothing much on offer at all. 

Meaning, we’re seeing governments showing up empty-handed. There’s this awful feeling that the big emitters are holding things back. These countries have decided to embrace selfishness over the survival of the planet. 

Nobody really gives two hoots to Kiribati, Maldives, Nauru, Seychelles, Tongo, Tuvalu and the other island states that are likely to disappear from the face of this earth in the not too distant future. due to rising seas brought about by the impact of climate change.

Last evening, I was in Bandar Puteri Puchong in Selangor – where I was a guest speaker at the MyPuchong Toastmasters meeting:

I also demonstrated that just about any topic one cares to think about can be made into a speech. 

And club president Theressa Thow challenged me to talk about "Men Wear Bras" – and which, there and then, I put together and delivered.

This club enjoys good meeting attendance because almost always, you can expect to see Toastmasters from their sister clubs, Puchong English and Master Jaya present – and therefore, their meetings will have that extra boost of spirited and zestful verve. That's one way to ensure club meetings are pumped up with lively energy on a consistent basis.

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