Protestors gather downtown for worldwide climate strike Ava Seccuro: co-editor-in-chief, Catherine Gagulashvili: co-editor-in-chief, Alya Mehrtash: staff writer

"We are the future, the mighty, mighty future"

Amid the loud and sporadic chants of hundreds of protestors on Friday, there was one message in common: to halt climate change, or else our future is at stake.

Since Friday, millions of people worldwide–led by Swedish environmental activist Greta Thunberg–gathered to strike at Los Angeles City Hall to raise awareness for the climate crisis preceding the United Nations Climate Action Summit, which takes place on Monday Sept. 23, 2019.

People across Los Angeles who attended the strike demanded a reaction from Mayor Eric Garcetti. After approximately a dozen people broke the barrier between the crowd and police, Garcetti eventually came out to make a statement. Speaking for only a few minutes, Garcetti was at first met with opposition. The crowd later rallied behind his closing statement in which he acknowledged the crowd's message.

Below are some of the pictures and interviews Highlights conducted from adults and youth alike at the protest.

“I think it was really inspiring to come out, just to see people of all ages and all backgrounds coming together for a common goal, and it was really inspiring to see people when they were talking, giving speeches about their stories and why they were here," Ava Dillard, a senior at Beverly Hills High School said. "I’m just looking forward to the future and what’s going to happen."

“I’m here because I love this planet so much. I’m willing to get shot with rubber bullets, I’m willing to get arrested because I love this planet so much,” Lorenzo de Felitta, pictured at the far right, said.

Michael Allen, representing the Goat Vs. Fish organization, which brings people together to reject the false divisions around us, he said, came to the strike to promote his organization and implement change.

“I’m here to say, ‘Let’s forget about all of those groups and let’s come together as goat and fish to protect the land and the sea on which we all versus,'" Allen said. "I’m here to support the protection of the stewardship of the environment which we all share. We’ve got to bring people together in order to accomplish great things, in order to make big change—we need people working together.”

Maia Supple, a junior at John Marshall High School and leader of the Sunrise chapter at her high school described the day as “crazy.” After meeting with her district’s superintendent, she helped plan a rally at her school and then proceeded to attend the march with her entire chapter. It took a month to organize students at her school to participate in the rally and the strike, she said.

“I thought it was great, just because you come from your school where there’s still a ton of people walking out, then you come and there’s even more people and you feel even more empowered to act. I think it’s really important that all these people are getting together and making our voices heard because if no one’s doing anything, you’ve got to let them know.”

High school students were not the only protestors knocking on City Hall's doors. Younger advocates like 11-year-old Nola Sherrod also showed up to address their concerns for the state of the planet.

“When I learned about climate change, it was in third grade from my science teacher. That night, I cried in my bed for about an hour, and it just depressed me that our world is dying because of people wanting money and power," she said. "So I thought that if I don’t go to this [strike] and [keep] saying, ‘Oh I will make a difference,’ that’s probably what everyone’s thinking, so we should all just go here and it will make a big difference."


Photo credits to Ava Seccuro