The Guardian

Greta Thunberg’s Powerful UN Speech And Death Glare At Trump Are Going Viral

I would be shocked to find someone living in 2019 who doesn't know who of 16-year-old climate change activist and Nobel Peace Prize contender Greta Thunberg.

In the wake of the global climate change strike last week, the Swedish native has been making her rounds through America to share her insight on just how much of an emergency climate change truly is.

Thunberg is rightfully calling climate change 'the beginning of a mass extinction.'

Instagram | @gretathunberg

Rather than politicizing the issue, Thunburg relies on scientific evidence that has been sound for more than three decades.

On Monday, she spoke at the United Nations Climate Action Summit, and despite her young age, she did not hold back against the room full of world leaders.

She used her platform to emphasize a social apathy that a lot of people have when it comes to climate change—world leaders included.

Instagram | @gretathunberg

"You are still not mature enough to tell it like it is," she said at the summit, "You are failing us. But the young people are starting to understand your betrayal."

Thunberg explained how she has sacrificed her childhood in order to fight for a cause that she shouldn't need to fight for.

Youtube | Vice

"This is all wrong, I shouldn't be up here," she says, "I should be back in school on the other side of the ocean. You have stolen my dreams and childhood with your empty words."

"You come to use young people for hope. How dare you!"

Youtube | Vice

"We are at the beginning of a mass extinction," she continues, "And all you can talk about is money and fairytales of eternal economic growth. How dare you."

"If you choose to fail us, I say: we will never forgive you."

Youtube | Vice

Her speech continued on addressing the disconnect between the severity of climate change effects and the lack of work done by public officials to make a change before it is too late.

"How dare you continue to look away then sit here saying that you're doing enough."

After her speech, Thunberg was captured standing near President Trump with a less-than-impressed expression.

The Guardian

As Trump began to speak, The Guardian managed to snap a photograph of Thunberg shooting Trump a scornful and well-warranted death glare. When the survival of earth and all its inhabitants is at stake, can you really blame her?

Both the speech and subsequent photographs went viral in a matter of hours.

The Guardian

Unfortunately, not everyone was supportive of Thunberg's verve and took her anger as a sign that she is too immature to warrant the audience she has cultivated.

A number of critics argue that Thunberg is simply being over dramatic on purpose.

"Notice that her emotion goes neutral after each statement," wrote Dave Bishop, "She's projecting outrage and sadness during her talking points then resets between each sentence fragment."

However, most of the internet came right to her defense.

"She is 16, she has Asperger's syndrome, English is not her native language and she is talking to the UN," wrote Twitter user Colette Pretorius, "I think she is brilliant."

Is it that difficult for people to wrap their heads around the idea of a well-spoken, intelligent, mindful teenager?

It works to the advantage of government officials to over-generalize all teenagers as whiney, overdramatic, and lazy so that they do not have to take them seriously when they bring up very real and pressing concerns.

The reality is that a lot of teenagers are more well-read, well-informed, and emotionally mature than the adults leading our country.

Ignoring activists because of their age completely eliminates millions of vital perspectives that can and will solve the world's social, financial, and environmental issues.

Watch the powerful speech for yourself.

Despite the roadblocks she may face, Greta Thunberg is using her platform to enact real, positive change across the globe. Her message is clear: We need to act before it is too late.