The streets of Berlin again filled with young people shouting and equipped with witty banners and asking their elders to do something already to curb climate change. But this time it was different, because their protest is already global and because they are becoming more. Tens of thousands of people took part this Friday in a rally where there was music and the classic slogans were chanted on a cold and windy day. Up to 25,000 children and young people, according to the organizers and between 15,000 and 20,000, according to the Berlin police to this newspaper. Across Germany, 200 protests were called.
At half past nine in the morning, the trams were already full of children with signs in the direction of the center. Half an hour later the protest started in Invalidenpark, next to the Ministry of Economy, where thousands of people gathered with colorful banners. "No planet B", "use less the car" or "Greta is vegan, and you?", In reference to the Swedish activist who has promoted the protests.
On the side, they prepared for the protest day Elli and her friends. They are 14 and 15 years old. Two of them are vegan. In the houses of three of them there is no car and they declare themselves in favor of the train in front of the plane. "Air tickets should be much more expensive and train tickets cheaper," says Elli, 14, petite and with pasta glasses. They say that this is "super" and that they have long known that "polar bears are running out of ice and without a house". "Oh, and also the sea level grows," says Martha.
They have learned all this talk with their parents, Instagram and the news for children, who has been talking about Greta and the Fridays for Future for weeks as they have called the protests. But also, they say, they alone have realized that the temperatures of last summer and this winter have not been normal. While the young women are talking, in the background we hear the classic canticle of the Friday demonstrations: "We are many and we make noise because they want to steal our future."
On another sidewalk, another young woman, twelve years old and with snails in her blonde hair, says she has come because "they have to take our future into account". "They have to pass stricter laws and above all, all countries have to act at the same time, because in Europe we share the air of America", explains the young woman who prefers not to publish her name and who assures that many of her companions They have not been able to come because their parents do not leave them. He confesses that today he is going to skip an exam they had at school.
In Germany, demonstrations began in mid-January. Since then, in many houses and in many schools the discussion revolves around whether it should be done during school hours. Students in Germany need a justification if they miss school and for many parents, even if they support the goals of their children's strike, it is a dilemma to justify their absence from the classroom. There are politicians who have also protested what they consider an unjustified truancy.
There are other German parents, however, who are already organizing under the motto Parents for Future to support the protests of the youngest. In Germany, Switzerland and Austria, About 20,000 scientists have also signed a petition to support the protesters.
The majority of the population in Germany supports the protests as reflected in the poll published by the public television ZDF. 67% of respondents said they support the protests of young people and 32% reject them. The rejection rises to 67% among the voters of Afd, the extreme right. In a video message recorded earlier this month, Chancellor Angela Merkel showed her support for the student protests.