Earth Week kicks off with a Trashion show and David Cobb as keynote speaker
A fashion show highlighting wardrobes made of trash, awards given for sustainability and a speech given by Cooperation Humboldt board member David Cobb kicked off Humboldt State’s Earth Week.
The “Earth Week Every Week” committee is a coalition of Associated Students programs and student clubs that organized the event to educate, create community and foster dialogue on issues of social and environmental justice, human and non-human rights and healthy lifestyles.
The “Trashion” show that started off the event was organized by Green Campus Team Lead Morgan Kipf.
“Our main goal is to spread awareness of sustainability and encourage behavioral change on campus,” Kipf said. “We also want to help save energy and water on campus.”
The Trashion show is a fashion show competition that promotes fashion creativity, waste reduction and sustainability. There were students adorned in old sheets crocheted by their grandma, recycled posters and beer cans acting as crowns. Beads held together warped and scratched CDs worn as crop tops walked the runway of the stage as techno music blared in the background.
Kipf said the third annual Trashion show was by far the biggest it’s been and gives her hope to include community members in the future.
“This is something I’ve always been a lead in,” Kipf said. “It started off as fun and silly and hopefully it keeps on growing.”
It’s organizations like Green Campus that Associated Students Environmental Sustainability Officer Isabel Sanchez said helps to create Earth Week. Sanchez is the head of the Earth Week Every Week Committee and said their role in A.S. is to make sure Earth Week happens and there is a committee in charge of it.
“I helped create this event and 20 other ones,” Sanchez said. “It’s difficult but so many people in A.S. and other organizations help out. Students are there for the event and stand by me.”
Sanchez invited David Cobb as the keynote speaker because “he’s radical, and to build resilience you have to be radical.” Cobb is an attorney who ran for U.S. president under the Green Party, is a member of the North Coast People’s Alliance, co-founder of Move to Amend and member of Cooperation Humboldt. Sanchez participated in Cooperation Humboldt workshops in the past and met Cobb through them.
“He is an energetic community member,” Sanchez said. “The workshops are way interesting. They make you physically move and speak with one another in a nonverbal way and are very community oriented.”
Cobb’s energy never waned as he spoke to a cheering crowd of students and faculty on his reasons for an ecological and economical crisis. Cobb said the capitalist system in the U.S. is racist and sexist and needs to be deconstructed.
“If we’re serious about making Earth Day real we have to understand how we are living is destroying Mother Earth,” Cobb said. “We are in a crisis, an ecological crisis. It isn’t coming, it’s here and it’s getting worse.”
Cobb went on to say the ecological crisis is fundamentally tied to the economic crisis. He said if capitalism is unlimited growth in a finite world then “capitalism is cancer” because cancer is the only thing in existence that has unlimited growth in our finite world. Cobb also said this is the first time he could say confidently we have enough resources to feed people and give health care, yet we aren’t doing that.
“It’s not one percent but .01 percent of psychopaths in charge of the system,” Cobb said. “The fundamental structures in which we are operating in needs to stop.”
When asked how HSU can contribute to the transition out of capitalism Cobb said by doing more of the good, like sustainability actions coming out of HSU dining services and less destroying, like the recent shut down of KHSU. Cobb then apologized to the students for the state of the world in which they inherited.
“It may not be your fault, but it’s your problem,” Cobb said.
For more information detailing Earth Week events go to: https://associatedstudents.humboldt.edu/content/2019-schedule