Sunday, November 05, 2006
So I went to the climate change rally ‘I Count’ (apologies for the not very good photo). It was actually really impressive how many people turned up, I think it was about 25,000. However, the organisers made the dire mistake of getting Simon Amstell to do a lot of the links. I have never been that keen on him but I now think he is an idiot and a bigot. He told some of the most inappropriate jokes and must have offended pretty much everyone who was there with at least one of his jokes. For example, he kept saying that because he was Jewish, he was one of the ‘chosen people’ so it didn’t really matter about climate change as he would be alright. I’m sure people breathed a collective sigh of relief about that.
He said many awful things but one of the worst was when he said “I’ve come up with the solution to climate change. There are too many people in the world. We need to get rid of some of them.” My mind started to wander through all the things he might come up with. I hadn’t considered the possibility he came up with though - that being “Next time someone comes to you with the ‘good news’ that they’re pregnant, don’t congratulate them, instead spit in their face and tell them how selfish they are.” Despite Trafalgar Square being filled with thousands of people the tumbleweed still rolled on through, as silence descended in response to his ‘humour’. There were jokes about Anne Frank, Princess Diana, Muslims. The list goes on…
People heckled and booed him and he kept saying “it’s humour, I’m using irony to bring us together.” As I said to a woman standing next to me, the main irony was that his humour was indeed drawing us together - by uniting us all against him. Still at least it got me talking to various people who were there as well as we all despaired at how someone could be that offensive and somehow think he was doing a good job. Another woman standing near me said “I have never wanted to heckle anyone in my life, but I *really* want to heckle him.”
Anyway, it’s probably not really the point to have gone to a rally and have the main focus on the terrible MC. It was actually quite inspiring to see that many people all together saying that they wanted to make a difference. Whilst it was about putting pressure on governments to make changes, it was also about saying that each of us as individuals can make a difference – by buying from companies that support the climate, switching things like TVs off instead of leaving them on standby, having a bath with someone else to save water. Oh hang on, baths use up lots of water, better make that showering with someone else. So there’s a few ways you could start to make a difference. I leave it to you to decide which you might be able to do.