Stomp, stomp, stomp, stomp – are the sounds of Power Vote fellows advancing toward the Prudential Building in Chicago holding signs that read “Yes we can, move beyond coal” and “Yes we can, stop fracking.” The enthusiastic chants for a clean and just future resonate within the on lookers as a sea of green shirts assembles in front of the building and a feeling of empowerment washes over my soul.
The sensation of having thousands of other young people out there working toward the same goal of shutting down dirty politics is encouraging. People in Ohio and Pennsylvania have had an intruder, exposed as fracking, come in through their back doors and threaten the lives of thousands. Denver and Georgia face too many accounts of folks that suffer from malignant air quality conditions. Florida is stuck with a power plant that has been broken multiple times yet continues to be approved for repair. It is time that we approach our current politicians with assertion and command because they are not even hiding their intentions anymore. This is our country as much as it is theirs and what I hear from the people is that we desperately need a reassuring plan for a clean future.
I am tired of being ignored and silenced. I am tired of continuously meeting people that ache from the pain of living with dirty energy. I am tired of not seeing politicians address our issues and most importantly, I am tired of the lies. I will not sit down and take their pursuit of millions of dollars while we work hard to get disaster in return. I will fight for my brothers and sisters in this country and I will stand up to the men in suits. As I prepare to return to Tallahassee with all the knowledge I have gained on the Power Vote Training this week, I find myself smiling and prepared to reverse the direction this country is headed in.