Tuesday, July 29, 2008

I Want To Be Severn Cullis-Suzuki, Environmental Activist

In 1992 a very young Severn Cullis-Suzuki took the stage at Earth Summit in Brazil. She chastised a group of United Nations delegates and government representatives from around the world. She reminded them in no uncertain terms why they were there and what their responsibilities are.

"You are not really heads of corporations and elected officials," she said. "You are fathers, mothers, husbands, wives and someones child." She reminded them that in kindergarten children are taught by adults to share, clean up their messes, get along with others, and be kind. "Have you forgotten those lessons?" she admonished them.

War, poverty, global warming, selfish consumerism - she threw it all back in their laps and begged them to do more than clap for her and smile. "Make your words count. Do something so when I have children, they will have a future."

It was the most powerful speech I've ever heard and it all flew out of the mouth of a twelve year old girl. I was so impressed and moved I cried. Here is the link to a grainy YouTube post of that speech. I wish I had a better copy to pass on but it's her words that will move you, not the cinematography.
Sixteen years later, Severn is still working to change the world. She is sought after to speak to groups and corporations around the world. She graduated from Yale with a degree in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology. She is a published author and was a member of a special UN advisory panel. She makes her voice heard. She rattles the cages of corporations like NIKE and calls them to task, as individuals and a group, to be responsible for their actions and responsible with our planet's resources.
She is what I want to be. What the videos on YouTube. Google her name and read her accomplishment, watch her other speeches and you will see why I want to be her. We should all be so aware and unwavering in our defense of our planet. We should all be so vocal.

4 comments:

franscud said...

Hi Lisa,

I hadn't heard of Severn before, so thanks for the intro. We definitely need thousands more like her. Too many folks with misplaced allegiances.

I'm very glad to see you back in the blogosphere :).

Lisa McGlaun said...

Hi Francis,

Did you watch the video? It's really incredible. I wish I'd been like that at 12..wow.

Peace,
Lisa

Fin said...

Hi Lisa,

Good to see you are back to blogging. I hope your spirit is lighter.

Lisa McGlaun said...

Fin,

Thanks. Yes, I'm doing better and it feels good to be posting again.

Peace,
Lisa