A bit of standard activist rhetoric struck a peculiar chord in Steve Ahlquist’s coverage in “Providence announces new policies on climate justice.”
To set the stage, a Zoom press conference was held featuring the following speakers:
- Providence Mayor Jorge Elorza
- Providence Councilwoman Helen Anthony
- Providence Councilman Pedro Espinal
- Providence City Director of Sustainability Leah Bamberger
- Providence Environmental Sustainability Task Force Chair Sue AnderBois
- Truth Box Inc. Principal Peter Gill Case (Truth Box is “a small architecture firm specializing in sustainable, energy-efficient design.”)
- Racial and Environmental Justice Committee Member Monica Huertas
The press conference was held to announce “new climate justice policies for the City of Providence,” including, for example, requiring all “large buildings” to track and report their energy use.
Here’s the stock political rhetoric that stuck out, spoken by Ms. Huertas:
“Each paragraph, each word, was uttered with the fervent belief that we the people, we the frontline communities, we the organized labor, we the indigenous tribes, we the environmental justice advocates, we the youth groups, we the racial justice organizations, will fight back. Fight, take back our city, and win.”
Whom are they fighting? This is a press conference by the city government announcing policies of the city government. They’ve won! They have now moved to the phase of imposing their will on everybody else using the regulatory, taxation, and police powers of the government. Watching officials with in that government nod along with the proclamation that “we will fight back… fight, take back our city, and win” ought to be disconcerting to Rhode Islanders who believe in freedom and an unoppressive government.
For those who continue to live or do business in Providence, one can only advise deep consideration of a move. The powers of the city are gearing up to make your life more difficult and to pick your pocket.