Energy & Environment

Climate-Change Protesters Block Rush-Hour Traffic in London

Police officers search a man protesting regarding climate change outside the Houses of Parliament in London, England, October 17, 2019. (Tom Nicholson/Reuters)

Climate-change protesters shut down busy commuter routes during peak rush hour in London on Thursday, climbing onto trains and angering people on their way to work.

The activists, members of the group Extinction Rebellion, caused the Jubilee Line and Docklands Light Railway to shut down after some of them climbed on top of and glued themselves to tube trains at several stations. Commuters attempted to drag protesters down from the trains and in some cases were recorded roughing them up.

An 83-year-old protester who glued his hand to the side of a train said he was “doing this for my grandchildren” in a video tweeted out by Extinction Rebellion.

The group originally said the civil disobedience was “necessary to highlight the emergency” but later appeared to reconsider.

“Was it the right thing to do? I am not sure,” a spokesman for Extinction Rebellion said. “I think we will have to have a period of reflection. It is too early to say.”

“None of us want to inconvenience ordinary people,” the group said. “That’s why we’re doing this in the morning when it will impact business as usual, and not in the evening, when people want to get home to be with their loved ones.”

London mayor Sadiq Khan condemned the protests, calling them “dangerous” and “unacceptable” and urging protesters to demonstrate peacefully.

“This illegal action is extremely dangerous, counterproductive, and is causing unacceptable disruption to Londoners who use public transportation to get to work,” Khan said in a statement. “It is also an unfair burden on our already overstretched police officers.”

Assistant Chief Constable Sean O’Callaghan of the London Police pleaded with commuters to allow officers to handle the protesters and refrain from engaging physically.

“It is important that commuters and other rail users allow the police, who are specially trained, to manage these incidents,” O’Callaghan said. “Unfortunately, there is still a risk that Extinction Rebellion will target the rail network during this evening’s peak. We will continue to have extra officers on patrol and will work to disrupt any potential criminal action before it happens.”

Most Popular


How States Like Virginia Go Blue

So this is what it feels like to live in a lab experiment. As a native Virginian, I’ve watched my state come full circle. The last time Democrats enjoyed the amount of power in the Old Dominion that they won on Tuesday, I was entering middle school in Fairfax County. In 1993 the governor was a Democrat, one ... Read More
Books, Arts & Manners

Why Study Latin?

Oxford professor Nicola Gardini urges people to read and study Latin. He believes that Latin is the antidote for the modern age, which seems transfixed by the spontaneous, the easy, and the ephemeral. His new book, Long Live Latin: The Pleasures of a Useless Language, argues that Latin combines truth and ... Read More

Religious-Freedom Voters Will Vote Trump

The late Supreme Court Justice Frank Murphy wrote, "Freedom of speech, freedom of the press, and freedom of religion all have a double aspect — freedom of thought and freedom of action.” To which one should be able to add, freedom of inaction -- meaning that absent a compelling state interest, people should ... Read More

Democratic Denial

One point I'd draw out from David Harsanyi's post below: It has been more than thirty years since a Democratic presidential nominee failed to make it to the White House and thought the loss was legitimate. Read More