Friends and countrymen,*
People tell us it takes courage to do some of the things we've done to make life a bit harder for heartless elites.
But that's absolutely nothing compared to the courage and sheer brilliant chutzpah of our friend and comrade Tim DeChristopher, who made history two years ago in Utah, and who's going on trial TODAY for defending the planet against those who would drill, drill, and drill until there's nothing left of anything.
In December 2008, Tim decided to disrupt an auction of oil and gas leases near the beautiful Arches and Canyonlands National Parks in Utah. The auction was Bush's parting gift to his good friends in industry, and Tim intended to disrupt the event and get himself arrested. But as he walked in the door, an attendant asked Tim if he was there to bid. "Why yes, yes I am," he answered, and was given a paddle. Tim then proceeded to win several lots in a row - until the auctioneer realized something was wrong, suspended the proceedings, and had Tim arrested.
After Obama took office, his administration investigated the auction for "irregularities," and a federal judge cancelled the sale.
Tim's action - which single-handedly saved many precious acres of Utah wilderness from destruction - stands out as one of the most inspired, and successful, acts of civil disobedience in all history.
Today, Tim goes to trial, and faces ten years in prison on two felony charges for stopping that illegal sale of public land. The goal of the federal prosecutors is clear: to make an example of Tim so that anyone will think twice about speaking out or taking effective action to save their community, or the planet.
Now is the time to stand with Tim, and not let them silence one of our most inspiring defenders of climate justice and environmental sanity.Please support the group that is coordinating Tim's legal defense, and local grassroots organizing on his behalf:http://ihcenter.org/groups/peacefuluprising
And if you're anywhere near Salt Lake City, please try to find a way to join the actions, marches, and public events happening there today, Monday February 28, in solidarity with Tim on the opening day of his trial: http://www.peacefuluprising.org/climate-trial
Tim's action is unique and inspiring, and is yet another indicator - among many, from Wisconsin to Egypt to the World Wide Web of Wikileaks - of the power of purposeful, heartfelt, fun action against heartless tyranny.
With any luck, we'll be back in touch soon with news of some great new opportunities.
Andy, Mike and the rest of the gang
*This is a reference not to men specifically, but to the citizens of ancient Rome - another historical context in which people had to rise up to stop injustice.