Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on Friday choked back tears during her speech in Copenhagen as she explained that her dreams of one day becoming a mother “now taste bittersweet” due to the harsh realities of climate change.
“I speak to you, not as an elected official or public figure, but I speak to you as a human being,” the socialist Democrat from New York told leaders at the C40 World Mayors Summit. “A woman whose dreams of motherhood now taste bittersweet because of what I know about our children’s future and that our actions are responsible for bringing their most dire possibilities into focus.
“I speak to you as daughter and descendant of colonized peoples who have already begun to suffer,” she said, her voice shaking. “Just two years ago one of the deadliest disasters in the United States struck in the form of Hurricane Maria. The climate change-powered storm killed over 3,000 Puerto Ricans, American citizens — my own grandfather died in the aftermath — all because they were living under colonial rule, which contributed to the dire conditions and lack of recovery.”
The C40 is a group of 94 mayors led by Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti which has proposed an international version of Ms. Ocasio Cortez’s Green New Deal, which seeks to transition the U.S. completely off fossil fuels within the next 10 years. The congresswoman on Friday praised the initiative dubbed the Global Green New Deal as the next step in defeating the world’s “greatest threat.”
Ms. Ocasio-Cortez, who turned 30 Sunday, has stated in the past that the threat of climate change has caused her and other young people to rethink parenthood.
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