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Home / World / How a small English town brought the uprising to extinction – Protests around the world: NPR

How a small English town brought the uprising to extinction – Protests around the world: NPR



Extinction Rebellion activists demonstrate on Monday at Lambeth Bridge in central London. The group is planning protests in Europe, North America and Australia over the next two weeks.

Isabel Infantes / AFP / Getty Images


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Extinction Rebellion activists demonstrate on Monday at Lambeth Bridge in central London. The group is planning protests in Europe, North America and Australia over the next two weeks.

Isabel Infantes / AFP / Getty Images

Katerina Hasapopoulos is not a typical rule breaker. She is 41 years old, the daughter of immigrants and once marketing director of power lunches.

Now she says, "I'm a rebel, I'm a tree nurse, I'm a defender."

Having children, three little girls, has helped her think more seriously about the world Although Brexit dominates the majority of headlines in the UK, Hasapopoulos devours stories about how people cause climate change.

"Whole companies are built to destroy our earth – it's what feeds us that gives us air," she says. "Many scientists tell us that we are already in the sixth mass mortality."

Isabel Infantes / AFP / Getty Images

Extinction Rebellion activists sit on a temporary wooden structure as they demonstrate on Lambeth Bridge on Monday.

Isabel Infantes / AFP / Getty Images

"A Call to Action" in a City with an Activist Series

The tactics of Extinction Rebellion, while controversial, are sometimes effective because the group has also contacted Swedish-inspired teenagers The activist Greta Thunberg says Srdja Popovic, a Serbian political activist who wrote the 2015 book Blueprint for Revolution.

"This is the generation that will rule the world in 10-15 years," he says. "Their passion is there … Even in the small cities in the US, you can see students protesting on Fridays" as part of the "Friday for the Future" movement.

Popovic led student protests against the late Serbian strongman Slobodan Milosevic to the late nineties. Today he heads the Center for Applied Nonviolent Actions and Strategies, which helps activists around the world to build effective movements. He says that climate movements have traditionally come to a standstill in the public awareness phase – "a climate march here, a demonstration at the G-10 there, a TV commercial, a Madonna song."

"What was lacking in contemporary green movements is a call to action," he says, "and Extinction Rebellion seems to hit it, saying," We are very aware that the planet is in a state of decline, us are very aware that something needs to be done, but that it will not be done by anyone else. It's time to take destiny in our hands.

A sign at the Beacon, an incubator for activist groups in Stroud, a town in the English Cotswolds, where Extinction Rebellion was founded.

Joanna Kakissis / NPR


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A sign at Beacon, an incubator for activist groups in Stroud, a town in the English Cotswolds, where Extinction Rebellion was founded.

Joanna Kakissis / NPR

Back in Stroud, which has long been an incubator of activism, this is a common feeling.

"We are running out of time," says Tracee Williams, co-founder of The Beacon, an "Activism Incubator" "In Stroud," where we can create more rebels. "

" Yes, what we do bothers people, "she says, before she suddenly bursts into tears." If someone has a better idea, we'll do that instead. "

The relatively low house prices and A number of local artists, including Clay Sinclair, originally from New Zealand, also rent a property in the area, run a gallery in the city, and also sell T-shirts and mugs that read "People's Republic of Stroud."

Sinclair says he has been trying to reduce his own carbon footprint since his local environmental group was globalized. "I refuse to fly anywhere on vacation," he says, "which my wife a little bit

But Sinclair also has reservations about Extinction Rebellion, saying that some members are involved in conspiracy theories, like the 5G technology that causes cancer, and when he attended the Spring XR protests in London participated "was my first observation that I have never seen so many white, bourgeois people in one place at once. But then it is the white, bourgeois people who have caused climate change.

The truck driver and native Stroud-American Spencer Ellis admits he has not seen many minorities like himself in the British chapters of Extinction Rebellion He is also stuck in traffic caused by the group's blockades.

Nevertheless, he cheers them. "I understand one hundred percent of what they do," he says.

He points to his 2-year-old daughter writhing in her stroller. "I'm 50, I'm not getting 50 Years more, "he says," but my daughter is two. "The planet is changing and we're scared."

Sophie Eastaugh, producer at NPR London, reported in Stroud.


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