In sentencing a quartet of protesters for blocking highway traffic for several hours, a judge in U.K. acknowledged that protest has a long and honorable history in that country. However, this cannot justify inconveniencing thousands of commuters.
I believe Judge Silas Reid has a valid point. The 10,000 commuters who, in October 2021, found themselves blocked on the M4 near Heathrow were not responsible for the climate crisis. Well, maybe a little responsible — they were burning gasoline and emitting C02 while driving 2 ton vehicles to get their 150 pound bodies (or should I say 68 kilos?) to the airport or to work.
Nonetheless, that’s quite an annoyance for people who are small players while, say, British Petroleum goes about its Earth-shattering business unimpeded.
Based on Judge Reid’s perfectly sensible reasoning, it seems clear to me that protesters would be better served by, say, torching a BP refinery or slicing through a natural gas pipeline. This would protect the relatively blameless British commuter, and instead cause difficulties for the climate abusing corporations — those who pose a mortal threat to every man, woman, child and animal on this planet.
If we compare the relative severity of these crimes — inconveniencing commuters for two hours vs. dooming billions of people along with many, many other living creatures…well, if those who were being a nuisance to commuters were sentenced to 5 weeks in prison (as they were), what would be a fair punishment for the mass-murdering climate abusers who run British Petroleum?