U Student Groups Participate in Utah People’s Climate March


A Governor Herbert mannequin in front of the Governor’s Mansion in Salt Lake City, Utah on Saturday, Apr. 29, 2017. (Rishi Deka, Daily Utah Chronicle)

By Rishi Deka

Several student groups from the University of Utah took part in the Utah People’s Climate March in Salt Lake City on Saturday. Organizations such as Fossil Fuel Divestment at the U, University Water Warriors and Student Clean Air Network helped organize the protest.

Speakers at the march went beyond climate change to address environmental justice, women’s rights, civil rights, immigration and police brutality. The topic of the Bears Ears National Monument, designated by President Barack Obama just before leaving office, was repeatedly brought up. On April 26, President Donald Trump signed an executive order to review national monument designations over the past 21 years. He was surrounded by Utah Republicans Gov. Gary Herbert, Sens. Orrin Hatch and Mike Lee, and Reps. Chris Stewart and Rob Bishop. Protesters were concerned that Trump will target Bears Ears.

After the speakers finished, the march headed toward the Utah Governor’s Mansion. Marchers carried two mannequins that engaged one another. One mannequin represented Herbert while the other depicted corporations such as Sinclair Oil, Wells Fargo, and Rocky Mountain Power. In the enactment, U students handed Herbert a list of climate change resolutions and urged him to fight corporate bribery and protect Bears Ears. Herbert agreed and defeated corporations in a fight between the two mannequins. Students and activists then cheered and danced to “Toxic” by Britney Spears. The march ended with a prayer led by Navajo activists.

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