Pleiades Arts | Truth to Power 8

Page 30

Jenny Blazing Website • Instagram Trickle Down speaks to the environmental hazards that disproportionately threaten Black and Brown communities. In April, the predominantly Black community of St. John the Baptist Parish, Louisiana endured the highest Covid-19 death rate in America. Pollutive industrialization has left residents with staggering rates of severe illness including heart disease, respiratory illnesses and diabetes—all highrisk conditions for Covid-19. Structural racism has focused the harmful impact of the climate crisis on people of color. To pursue climate justice, we must dismantle racist environmental policies and learn from the many Black voices informing our path forward. In the words of Mustafa Santiago Ali, V.P. of Environmental Justice at the National Wildlife Federation, “When we say, ‘I can’t breathe,’ we literally can’t breathe… At every turn the deck is stacked against us.” There can be no climate justice without racial justice, nor racial justice without climate justice.