How to Stall a Revolution

Historically, women and children lead revolutions
They are the everyday people who prolong the fight
Textbooks do not mention those who make the stage on which the revolutionary stands
She is never granted a footnote
Yet she is both the kindling and the fuel
Knowing this, they ensure the environmental revolution will slow its arrival
They know how to cut off its resources

When teenage girls are told in mass that turtles diefrom their use of plastic
A grassroots movement appears to reach each corner of the globe
Once the young women advocate for metal and silicone the public stance changes
Plastic straws are a necessary evil
The rest of the world laughs in their face
If you trick the teenage girls into fighting for the wrong viewpoint
It is not hard to make caring into a joke
Everyone knows that teenage girls are stupid and shallow
Everything she stands for should be rightfully ignored

It is the seventeenth year of a mother’s water boil advisory
She sends her child to school with a plastic bottle in their backpack
The plastic gives her enough time to cook dinner after work
The same people who are placing pipelines across her land have voted yes
In the next two years there will be no more plastic bottles
They do not promise to bring her water safe enough for her children to drink
They say that would be too hard
She hands out waters while she protests the destruction of the rivers
and the sea
They call her a hypocrite

It’s easy to put off the inevitable
A few more years and there will be no point
All there is to the process is to cut off the fuel
Remove the
kindling from the fire
There is no longer a stage for the revolutionary

by Kirby Harris

February 4, 2020

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Published by Kirby Harris

Kirby Harris is a student at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, completing her undergraduate degree in Global Development.

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