Why is a Kalamazoo Central Teacher Currently on a Hunger Strike?
An award-winning physics teacher from Kalamazoo Central is taking a stand in the cold rain.
President Joe Biden's plan to rebuild the U.S. infrastructure had a $6 trillion price tag a couple of months ago. As Democrat and Republican lawmakers negotiated terms, that price tag dropped to $4 trillion, then $3 trillion. Now, Democrats have taken so much out of the bill it is down to $1 trillion. Measures to help prevent dangerous climate change are likely to be completely cut out of the bill. Many Americans find this unacceptable.
Last week a group of climate activists began a hunger strike in Washington D.C. In an effort to pressure President Joe Biden to put climate change measures back into the bill, these activists have been camped out in front of the White House, vowing not to eat until their demands are met.
That's where Josh Gottlieb comes in. Gottlieb is a 46-year-old physics teacher for Kalamazoo Central. You may have driven by Mr. Gottlieb the other day, sitting in front of the high school in the cold rain holding a sign that says, "CLIMATE CHANGE IS AN EMERGENCY."
Mr. Gottlieb is not jumping on a green bandwagon. In fact, he's always been very serious about climate change. In 2019, Gottlieb received the Green Schools Champion award from The U.S. Green Building Council of West Michigan.
The Kalamazoo Central teacher began his hunger strike on Monday and plans to go without food until Sunday. Gottlieb, who took a week of unpaid leave for his hunger strike, told WMUK that he was inspired by the movement in D.C.,
he was inspired by young members of the Sunrise Movement, a climate action group, who have started an indefinite hunger strike outside the White House to protest the cuts in the infrastructure bill’s climate plan.
On day 2, the Kalamazoo Climate Crisis Coalition posted a photo showing a group of people joining Mr. Gottlieb saying, "Mr. Gottlieb isn’t sitting alone anymore."
We wish Josh Gottlieb and all others involved in the hunger strike good health and best of luck getting the attention of the administration.
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