Posted on behalf of Kay Young, Team Leader, Team For the MASSes.
I have devoted my summer to supporting the fossil fuel resistance across Massachusetts for reasons of every shade. A commonality between these reasons is that they are all
deeply rooted in emotion: fear, love, longing. However, somehow is it easy to cloak my emotions with a cerebral veil of scientific specifics about complexity and calamity, especially when appealing to others to join the movement. When I am asking someone to sign my petition it is really easy to approach a stranger and rattle off the rationale for more progressive policy. But what do I do with the ball of angsty earnest that stirs me?
Ubuntu is a word that roughly translates to “I am because we are.” The word orginated in Southern Africa in the mid-19th century originally describing human nature and rose to more prominence during the 1960′s as one of the ideals that anchored the movement from apartheid to Black majority rule in South Africa. The philosophy of Ubuntu says that people are intrinsically connected and as such we dynamically create each other. To me the philosophy comes with an imperative to justly sustain each other, both physically and mentally. Translating this philosophy into the movement to end our dependence on fossil fuels, I feel that I should strive to address both the physical and emotional environment. I want to work to shut down the infrastructure that disproportionately clouds the lungs of youths in a way that not only brings solar arrays, but simultaneously inspires reconnection with ecosystems and community.
While staying at the Common Street Community Church in Natick, Massachusetts, I have had time to reflect on my experience of Climate Summer so far. Although my teammates and I have made some strong contributions to the communities we have left behind, we had yet to contribute work that elicits an emotional response-until this week. We
launched a project called #guerilla artfare. The project includes a chalked mural and an installation we titled Ubuntu. We hope that through our art we can emotionally engage the people of Natick.
Check out our #GuerillaArtfare video here!