Dear 2020 Presidential Candidates, We Have to Talk About the Planet



Climate change is becoming a bigger threat as politicians continue to sideline the issue.


Since November 11, 2016, I have protested the position of our president and waited for his replacement with great joy. In November 2018, I voted blue to flip the House. Now, I wait for another November, except this time my vote will require something deeper than party ties and social and economic policy. The candidate I vote for in 2020 must be primarily concerned with the fate of our climate.

I, like many others, want Trump out of office and support many famous liberal aims. I support universal health care, the sociopolitical and economic equality of the sexes and races, that abortion should be a federal right and that we need to impose stricter gun control laws and ban the sale of all semi-automatic weapons.

I believe in all of these policies strongly, but none of them matter if we do not have a president — or government — who understands the gravity of our effect on the environment.

Climate change is the only issue that should matter in the 2020 election. And, though science is not politics, we have allowed our politics to come before science. This must stop. We cannot afford — our planet cannot afford — to continue putting the fate of Earth on the back-burner of our country’s agenda.

After the staggering Climate Report was released last fall, it is estimated we have 12 years to reverse climate change or suffer from a barrage of environmental consequences. This includes rising tides, more competition for natural resources, and even further extinction of valuable species. Yet, we continue to assume we are all on the same page regarding the environment. Every policy is trivial when compared to environmental. It won’t matter if we grant universal health care when there will be no future left to need it; it won’t matter if we have a military or a standing army if the war we’re fighting is one that does not require training or weapons.

We cannot afford to spend time fighting every issue. We the people of the United States, in order to save our planet, must stand united in doing so. We need a candidate who will advocate for sustainable energy, who will enact stricter laws on what cars we manufacture and who will not only advocate for fair trade but demand it.

We need a candidate who understands that there is no planet B.

So to our 2020 presidential candidates:

I hope you know it means you are serving as an example for the rest of the world. I hope you know you are serving our natural resources that were here on this land long before you were. And I hope you know that you are serving our country to assure our safety — to assure we will have a country to call home in fifty years.

Please remember that you are not being elected just to serve our country, but to serve our planet.