Climate Change

Climate Strike Disrupts D.C. Commutes

More than 1,000 activists march to protest the state of the environment.


Car horns, police whistles, and people chanting "The polar bears are on fire!": These were the sounds of today's "climate strike" in Washington, D.C.

As the Global Climate Summit, a United Nations–sponsored event, was beginning in New York City, several groups of climate activists took to Washington's streets to profess their support for stricter regulation of the environment. Marching down and blocking off streets with dozens of police units in tow, an estimated 1,150 protesters passed out fliers and shouted slogans. Dozens were reportedly arrested for blocking traffic.

Protesters chained atop a barricade of cardboard flames in D.C. claim that polar bears are on fire.

Kaley, a recent college graduate who majored in environment science, was there with her group, Extinction Rebellion. She enthusiastically expressed her support for a host of policies, including a more aggressive carbon tax and reparations to indigenous people over energy projects, such as the Keystone Pipeline, that she said had failed to consider historical treaty boundaries and impacts to tribal lands. Broadly speaking, Kaley said, Extinction Rebellion stands for "literally anything that keeps us alive."

Some commuters shared Kaley's commitment to Extinction Rebellion's message. One biker initially expressed exasperation with the traffic, saying "I'm just trying to get to work," but changed his tune when informed that the delay was due to climate activists. He even went so far as to state that he "might take the day off to support" the group.

But for some, the consequences of the commotion hit a little harder. "I might lose my job over this," one disgruntled motorist grumbled as he waited for a group of slow-moving protesters to pass. He expressed sympathy for the activists' goals but opined that they "fuck a whole lotta people over" by such tactics. As traffic started to move again, the man gestured to the hundreds of other motorists leaning on their horns and reversing up one-way streets and asked, "Why us?"

Police stand at one of many D.C. intersections to prevent cars from passing through.

Extinction Rebellion recognizes that today's protests will cause problems for regular people. In fact, the pamphlet protesters hand out to passers-by read, "We understand that our actions are disruptive to your day, and we are truly sorry." But Kaley insisted to Reason that "one day of mission spreading far outweighs one day of inconvenience."

The pamphlet states that the protesters are "willing to make personal sacrifices" to change "business as usual." But today it was the commuters, not the demonstrators, who suffered the inconveniences.

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  1. So in a country of more than 300 million, a thousand losers show up to block a few streets. This is significant why?

    1. My thoughts exactly.

    2. Noah is probably stationed at the Reason DC offices and was delayed by this so he was industrious enough to write an article about it?

      Or he used it as an excuse because he was too hung over to get to work on time.

    3. They may not be familiar with the traffic in D.C. You don’t need a thousand protesters to muck up traffic; an errant squirrel can do it.

    4. For every protester that shows up, there’s a thousand more that don’t. So there’s like a million of them – that’s Pat Buchanan-level support for climate extinction. Or climate extinguishment, whatever.

      1. By that logic, the Million Man March represented somewhere between 400 million and 2 billion African-American men. That’s pretty impressive for a country whose total population isn’t even 400 million.

        Or maybe your 1:1000 ratio is a tad high. Perhaps the right ratio of “protesters that show up” to those that don’t is a little closer to 1:2. So there’s like 3000 of them.

    5. Well, unlike Scott Pressler, they won’t do shit to fix the problem.

  2. Extinction Rebellion recognizes that today’s protests will cause problems for regular people. In fact, the pamphlet protesters hand out to passers-by read, “We understand that our actions are disruptive to your day, and we are truly sorry.”

    No they are not. Fucking assholes.

    1. If they cared about regular people they wouldn’t be calling for “a more aggressive carbon tax”. That tax would fuck regular people, not the “1%”.

      1. Their parents are the 1%-otherwise they would be working to pay off student loans.

    2. I’m sure they are a sorry lot. Just not in the way they think.

  3. Only 1000 people? Jeeze, that’s a little pathetic for such an “important” event. You’d think more people would care. Or maybe they realize its all just virtue signaling and political theater.

  4. people chanting “The polar bears are on fire!”

    I guess they didn’t get the memo: it’s “climate change” not “global warming”.

    1. I saw The Flaming Polar Bears open for Lou Reed back in ’86 at the old Palladium.

    2. “We don’t need no water
      Let the motherf***ers burn…”

      How else do you respond to that?

      1. “How else do you respond to that?”

        “Fuck you, Kaley and your Watermelon symps, too!”

  5. notice they arent doing this anywhere where they know the motorists are likely to be strapped

    1. I doubt if they stuck their oh-so-white noses in some of the tougher neighborhoods in D.C.

  6. My wife, Polish, is about one-third central Asian, according to her DNA. We demand reparations from Mongols for centuries of rape.

    1. “Polish” is an unusual name for a woman.

    2. And who wasn’t oppressed by the Roman Empire? Italy will have to declare bankruptcy and hold a fire sale of all its assets.

  7. Causing traffic delays that keep a bunch of gas-burning cars idling is a great way to protest. Keep up the good work!

    1. Oh, yes, and… Of the estimated 1,150 protesters, how many of them got to the protest site(s) by walking or bicycling? Even IF they did one of the latter 2, to get there, they were…

      EXHALING HORRIBLE C-OH-TWO as they got there!!! Oh noes!!!!

    2. “Causing traffic delays that keep a bunch of gas-burning cars idling is a great way to protest. Keep up the good work!”

      That just shows how important it is for everyone to switch to electric cars! Then the protestors can disrupt traffic without adding to the global warming emissions (power plant emissions don’t count because of reasons).

      1. Also all of the dead birds of prey, and dead bats, and insects, due to windmills, don’t count, ’cause of reasons. Solar power and desert tortoises, etc. Green power ain’t so green.

    3. How many motorists couldn’t make it to DC, so they just idled their cars in the driveway in solidarity?

  8. One This is getting more national news than the fucking march for life. Which is hilarious given it’s pathetic size. Two I think if this had impacted my commute I might have gone “falling down” on those motherfuckers fucking hippies that or my heart would have given out from sheer rage.

  9. Well, it is only DC, so mostly federal workers, or those who feed them got screwed, so win-win for the rest of the world. Yet another reason to stay out of places where the constitution is suspended.

    Protester #1: “the planet is dying! What can we do?”
    Protester #2: “I know, let’s make a lot of cars sit and idle much longer than normal. That will show how much we care.”

  10. I’m sure all of their protest signs and flyers will all be responsibly recycled.

  11. They were in Dupont Circle? If they held up traffic, how could you tell?

  12. I’ll admit it — I’d bang Greta so hard the neighbors would complain of her loud ‘Uff da’ screams.

    1. How many Indigenous and African Americans were triggered by Ms. Greta’s sailing across the Atlantic?

  13. “More than 1,000 activists march to protest the state of the environment.”

    We should applaud these rich, spoiled white kids for fucking up the traffic in Washington, DC.
    These are the same ones who trashed NYC a few years ago when they joined the Occupy Wall Street movement.
    Hopefully, the ruling elites will listen to these naive and gullible kids, and redistribute everyone’s wealth to our obvious betters in the quest to change the weather, implement a socialist slave state and launch the mandatory oppression of the great unwashed masses (for their own good, of course) so we can finally live in a proletariat paradise we all covet so much.

    1. I have friends that live in the gentrified city that are pretty far left and constantly talking about the environment. I am amazed at the garbage they produce each week and take to the curb. I think the majority comes from getting take-out daily. Then, when they’re done watching a Netflix show they let the menu screen on for hours which means the PS4 is running along with the television. They’re always charging their phones. I can have a charge last 2-3 days. They have to charge 2-3 times a day.
      But hey, they made a change by protesting.

  14. wow nobody hardest hit

  15. When in trouble,
    When in doubt,
    Run in circles, scream and shout.

    If they don’t seize power soon, they will be too late. There are credible projections of solar activity leading to a grand solar minimum circa 2030, meaning there will be a cooling over the next decade and then f’ing cold until 2050 or so.

    Ponder the Maunder.

  16. I loved how all the kids pledged to never get driver’s licenses so as to not contribute to fossil fuel burning.

    1. But then how will they get their free healthcare without a photo ID? Passports must be verboten too, since jets burn lots more fossil fuel than cars.

  17. “Broadly speaking, Kaley said, Extinction Rebellion stands for “literally anything that keeps us alive.””

    This woman has no idea what the means.

  18. Maybe the “climate rebellion” folks would enjoy being “inconvenienced” by spending an equivalent amount of time to that wasted by commuters at hard labor doing something useful, like picking up litter along the side of the road, or cleaning graffiti. these folks have too much time on their hands.

  19. This fairly fawning coverage reminds me of my first experience with national coverage of protests that I experienced first hand.

    Way back in the early 90’s when I was in grad school and later working at Emory in Atlanta, I’d run into animal activist protesters against animal research. There would usually be between 6-15 people there – but the local news would cover it like it was a big deal. (It was kind of a big deal for us, as these people could be quite violent. There were concerns about bombings and such).

    I was working a bunch, so I didn’t see the coverage the first few times…. but then ABC news was there one day and I made a point to watch the news to see what they had to say. I had actually engaged a couple of the leaders of this protest and they were insanely misinformed about the state of medical research, computer science and how many lives modern medicine saves.

    So I watched the story…. and wow, did they make it look bigger than it was. There were never more than 12 people there, and mostly only 6 or 8 were around. So they had them all bunch up along the curb and then shot them close up from several angles, making it look like it was a huge crowd, when they didn’t even fill a street corner sidewalk.

    I knew they’d do a friendly interview…. but I didn’t know they would just flat-out fabricate a movement out of a handful people. But they crafted the entire thing to make it look and sound like there were hundreds of protesters at the CDC when that was patently false.

  20. I fear the Climate Change Cult much more than I fear climate change. I’ve noticed too that as their predictions get goofier, so too do their antics, and the sacrifices they want everyone else to make. The only way to really not have any carbon footprint is to be homeless, forage, and crap in the street/woods-think there was even an article in the Atlantic recommending this- so I’m sure we will find these kids and that Swedish chick living on the streets in a few years, true to their word…

  21. Should be a misdemeanor to run over climate protesters with time off for good behavior.

  22. Not joining this cult. I’d be more than happy to cut all of THEM off from fossil fuels and let them slip back into the stone age. I don’t see why they want to drag the rest of us to hell with them, though.

  23. 1000 climate activists you say? That’s probably slightly more than the combined number of KKK members and actual Nazis in the US! Good showing! (Though, sadly, there may be substantial overlap between climate activists and Nazis.)

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