Big ideas and the harsh deadline of climate change
SALINA, Kan. — Bill McKibben didn’t always make a habit of getting arrested. He was a wunderkind, a Harvard graduate who became a staff writer at the New Yorker at the age of 25 but also was a competitive cross-country skier, ran a homeless shelter, and taught Sunday school at a Methodist church.
One Sunday morning in late September, the 58-year-old McKibben was at The Land institute in the middle of Kansas farm country, preaching about the imminent crisis of climate change. It is, he said at the Prairie Festival, a cause of such existential importance to civilization that some people, especially those who are older, with less to risk, should join him in civil protests that will likely cause them to be jailed, as McKibben had been the month prior to his Kansas visit.