A movement where librarians turn outlaws

This is the beginning of a new movement, one where librarians become outlaws, and children become warriors, writes Suzanne Harrington

My friend Teresa, a 53 year old librarian, gets arrested, and held in police cells overnight. She and I are on Oxford Street in London together, at the Extinction Rebellion, bringing supplies to our teenagers and twentysomethings who are camped out at Marble Arch.

We are astonished at how well organised, well informed, and well chilled the protest is; it feels like a festival, except in the middle of the street in central London. There are bright banners everywhere emblazoned with words like ‘Non Violent’ and ‘Tell the Truth’ and ‘System Change Not Climate Change’. You can’t argue really. Not with 60% of species wiped out since Teresa and I were in primary school. No wonder our kids are walking out of school, climate striking. No wonder they are disrupting key areas of cities all over the world, from Ireland to New Zealand, Canada to Uganda.

Teresa and the arresting officers are mutually apologetic, behaving with impeccable politeness. It is all as British as tea and crumpets. She is one of a thousand people non-violently arrested over Easter in London; the police are overwhelmed.

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