Dr Helen Skilton’s Mitigation Statement

1) Helen being carried away by five police officers.

2) Helen sitting down whilst a police officer takes notes
Helen’s arrest

I am pleading guilty to the charge of obstruction, because I was, intentionally obstructing the road outside the Oil and Gas Fiscal Summit in Oct 2019 as part of Extinction Rebellion’s peaceful civil disobedience protest.

I did it because it is the only thing I can think of to highlight, to the general public and those in power, that we are harming our planet and that we are going to have to change to prevent reaching tipping points of no return.

I am a Biology teacher and I teach ‘Climate Change and Human Impact’ to my pupils at GCSE and A level. It is in the syllabus, it is in all the text books. It is a scientific fact that humans are having a devastating impact on our environment causing destruction and ultimately extinction of many organisms.

We have taken over half the habitable land to grow our food and we are polluting our land, sea and air, with little, if any, accountability. Our world is no longer a safe place for most living organisms, including many humans, and without change it will get far worse.  

I would like the truth about how serious this issue is to be told.  Not just in school text books but in our politics, our media, our culture: places where everyone can hear it, again and again, loud and clear. We are going to have to change, otherwise a tsunami of devastation is going to hit us.

We, the human race, are not separate from the rest of this world. We are not independent, we are just one small part of an amazing planet, with miraculous conditions for life. This planet does not belong to us. We belong to this planet. All the elements we use, flow through us. We breath air, oxygenated by plants and algae. We eat food, made from other living organisms. We consume water and minerals, that are recycled through our atmosphere. Not one part of our live-support is separate from any other part of this world.

Currently, it is not a crime to pollute and destroy our life-support system and it is a not crime for our government & media to keep denying, deflecting and delaying. But there should be.

Until there is a law protecting our living planet from destruction, people who are aware, will just have to keep obstructing highways, disrupting business-as-usual, until the truth is told and we start acting now.

Posts and articles are the views of their authors and not necessarily of the XR Buddhists group.

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