Just after Independence Day, I was contacted by some local advocates for social and environmental justice. They asked if I would consider running for office as a “climate candidate,” to highlight the need for action in the face of the climate crisis.
I wanted to say no. I already have a full-time job. I try to do my part through activism. I’m comfortable in my routines.
But humanity is facing a crisis of epic proportions, and I can’t justify sticking with comfortable routines. I feel I must answer the call, put myself out there, and inject a sense of urgent ecological concern into our civic discourse. The climate crisis intersects with virtually everything, and should be at the forefront of our dialog and action.
That’s the opportunity I see in this race for City Council At-Large: to bring greater visibility to climate issues. It’s also an opportunity to strengthen our community’s political engagement around these issues.
It will be noted that I’m the only candidate in this race who has not held public office. The other candidates all have substantial name recognition, to say nothing of their substantial campaign budgets. I am undaunted, because I am not running against them. I am running for the people, for the future, for the love of Mother Earth.
If my campaign can raise climate action to the top of the public agenda for the city of New Orleans, I will consider that a success. If my campaign can help to mobilize the community for climate justice, I will consider that a victory.
In short, this campaign is not about me, but about the living Earth we all share, upon whom we are utterly dependent for our very existence.