Climate activists arrested for protest on Ted Cruz’s lawn

Activists held signs which read ‘Our Homes Flood, Our People Freeze, Cruz Abandons Us’ in apparent reference to the senator’s trip to Cancun amid Texas’s freak deep freeze in February during which dozens of people died

Louise Boyle
Senior Climate Correspondent, New York
Wednesday 23 June 2021 21:28 BST
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Related video: Houston Police discuss climate protesters arrests

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Climate activists from the youth-led Sunrise Movement have been arrested during a protest on the property of Texas Senator Ted Cruz, the group said Monday.

Eight demonstrators were arrested on the front lawn of the Republican’s home in Houston. Pictures released by the activist group showed young people being led away in handcuffs.

Houston Police Department said the majority of protesters were “extremely peaceful” and expressing their First Amendment right to protest but a handful were trespassing on the senator’s property.

Protesters under the banner “Generation on Fire” have spent six weeks on a 400-mile trek along the Gulf Coast from the New Orleans Superdome in Louisiana to end up in Texas.

The climate crisis, largely caused by the burning of fossil fuels, is contributing to more extreme hurricanes and dangerous heat battering the region.

Protesters with the Sunrise Movement outside of the home of Texas Senator Ted Cruz on Monday before a number of them were arrested

More than 100 activists finished the final mile together at Senator Cruz’s home on Monday morning and sat down on the grass holding sign which read “No Deal with Climate Deniers”, and “Which Side Are You On, Biden?”

One sign which read “Our Homes Flood, Our People Freeze, Cruz Abandons Us” appeared to be a reference to Mr Cruz’s trip to Cancun, Mexico amid Texas’ freak deep freeze in February during which dozens of people died when the power grid failed.

The Independent has contacted Senator Cruz’s office for comment.

The group is demanding that President Joe Biden stop making concessions on his climate agenda in the name of “fake bipartisan”, as one handcuffed activist, Kidus Girma, said.

“Politicians like Cruz and Biden can’t sell my future away to their highest donor while Gulf South residents are losing their lives to storms like Claudette and the Texas Freeze,” Girma added.

The group is also demanding that the Biden administration create a nationwide conservation corps, hiring 1.5 million people on projects to help the US adapt to impacts of the crisis.

Last week Sunrise protests targeted the palatial homes of Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senator Dianne Feinstein in San Francisco.

The activists dumped wildfire ashes which they had brought from Paradise, the scene of 2018’s Camp Fire, the deadliest blaze in California history. The massive fire, caused by faulty power lines but exacerbated by climate-driven conditions, left 85 people dead and destroyed 95 per cent of structures.

Sunrise Movement says the recent protests are a call to action for an even larger rally in Washington DC on 28 June.

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