The “Great” action at the Giant Spider
What was meant to be THE action of the two weeks negotiation, leaving me in a mixed bag of emotions.
Simply, the action was meant to put pressure on the ministers and negotiators at Doha to get something more tangible that would aid prevent further global warming of the planet. This is especially so because over the past two weeks, the negotiators have turned out to be less than willing to come together for some kind of compromise, creating a deadlock. The outcome looked bleak with either an outcome of document with no legally binding targets or perhaps a joint statement in agreeing to disagree. Either outcome are not acceptable by any standards, at least within members of the civil society.
And so, instead of the shaming and boo-ing of what was going on, it was chosen by organiser to have a more encouraging action by singing a song, urging the decision makers at COP18 to do something now. And many were ready to do this the day before as the rallying began about 24 hours before the action were to take place. Many were excited, including myself, to get involved, see how it worked out and to be inspired further. A song to show solidarity that we want actions to be taken now. A positive encouragement messaging.
Barely an hour before the action was scheduled to start, we start to see groups of people going around to those who were ready to be involved to urge them to do the opposite. These group felt that instead of dancing and singing, what should be done was placing a sticker on ones lips and stare at the negotiators to pressure them, sending them signals of the disappointment felt. A more solemn messaging.
So as we approach the given hour, gathering at the giant spider witness the coming of security officers standing guard of the place, media with their cameras beginning to swamp up the place in anticipation for the action that was widely spread to be THE action to bring the largest impact. And then people started to gather under the spider statue in swamps. Two kinds of supporters began to emerge: one that gives out pieces of paper with the lyrics of the song to be sung, while the other gives out this round red dot paper to be place over the lips. It looks alright for awhile because people just kept swarming up the space either to be involved or just to see what is going to happen.
And then, the song began to play. From where I stood, I heard nothing except for the words “now now now”, which are part of the lyrics of the song that people were meant to sing. Everything else, was pure mumbling. By now, members of the media along with their cameras have surrounded the action crowd to capture the moment, and being on the outside, i could barely see anything that was going on. I attempted to steal a few glance and saw some people singing while a relatively large group of people just standing there with the red dot placed over their lips.
For some reason, at that particular moment, a sense of disappointment began to build up within me and it was barely second it overwhelmed my once excited emotions. I walked away even before the action finished.
The key disappointment was felt not just o the fact that the so called action turned out to what it seems to be a disaster. Rather, it would be the message that it is conveyed to the negotiators and even among members of the civil society.
Should even civil society members not be able to even come together as a single voice to do one simple action; how could one expect representatives of states, with the interest of its citizens, easily one to a consensus of matters that would involve finances and lives. And even though it was said several times that the solution is simple the need for a strong “political will”, but yet how many are willing to risk everything for the greater good of the world, including its citizens, at the expense of their career.
I am by default a hopeful person, believing that there will always be miracles and in the good of people. And while the above may come across me giving up on the negotiation process or even the ability of us as mankind to salvage our damages, I still remain somewhat optimistic. Just not for now after what happened.
Some would say its no longer a choice to be positive and look towards for some sort of miracle in the process. We have to be hopeful in order to survive, so that it will motivate us to keep going and keep fighting.
And perhaps this is true. After all, when Pandora opened up the box of sufferings and sickness, she did keep “hope” around.