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Web Letters | The Nation

Re 'A Conversation with Greenpeace's Kumi Naidoo'

Working for living justice

I strongly support Kumi Naidoo's suggestion that activists need to see the larger relationships between environmental justice, economic justice and social justice, and should then build a network of mutual support and cooperation upon this understanding.

As just one example of such larger relationships, we can examine corporate hunger for natural resources such as land, lumber and water, connect those interests to United States war and political disruption in Central and South America, and see the resulting poverty as the astonishing wealth from utilizing these resources is funneled to the corporations that wanted those resources. Thus we see large-scale environmental, social and economic injustice all woven together; activism that only remains concerned with a particular niche necessarily handicaps itself, because the power of a movement is proportional to its scale. Wealth and inequality are absolutely built on both divisions among people and exploitation of the environment, and activists need to attack this reality boldly and comprehensively.

It is time to work for a living justice that places individual battles against injustice within a larger picture of exploitation that affects all living things, from global warming and monocropping to prejudice and war, and everything in between.

John L. Clark

Cleveland, OH

Sep 29 2010 - 5:24pm