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To My Future Children,

You would not be here if I thought it could only get worse.

I wasn’t too old before I realized that a generational divide exists between me and my own parents– your grandparents. Climate change was my problem to solve from the beginning, they could escape it. But my generation, we see it happening in front of us. We fill the gaps in our knowledge with resources dispersed on social media and the internet. We share knowledge and connection, breaking down the barriers between humans that past generations have tried to build up. We see destruction on the horizon, and, in many ways, have already experienced it.

But like I said, you wouldn’t be here if I thought things could only get worse.

People want to write it off– climate change, human failure, destruction of our own selves and our planet– maybe that’s because they don’t understand, maybe that’s because they’re too afraid to be radically optimistic. I was born into a world plagued with capitalist greed, corrupt power, and negligence for both humanity and nature. I can attest it isn’t always easy to be radically optimistic. Yet all around me, young people are getting it done, organizing in the streets, getting their names on the ticket. I believe in the young people of my generation.

We don’t want to put our children in the position we were born into– a world that appears to be crumbling, physical disaster occurring around us, the threat of impending doom causing sickness to our Earth as it does to our heads. We won’t let you exist in a world like that. So that’s why, right now, we are organizing. Electing climate champions to the local, state, and federal offices. Lobbying for climate protection at all levels. Educating our friends and family members. Going meatless. Reducing our individual carbon footprint– its why your clothes are thrifted and why our lawn doesn’t look like the one in my childhood pictures. I’ve quickly learned that combatting climate change intersects with every aspect of my life, and for you, I will change all of it. Because you deserve a better world, a healthier life free from the burden that other generations have passed onto you.

You’re here because things will change over the next 30 years. It won’t be a utopia, it won’t be close to perfect– but you’ll be able to see that we’ve progressed in the right direction and there is no room to turn back. And eventually– because the young people will win– you will lead us into an even brighter future.

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