City Council To Make Pointless Gesture About Carbon Footprints

June 19, 2015 | Liam Mathews

Today from 12-1 PM, the offices of the New York City Council will turn out all the lights in order to “raise awareness of energy conversation and the availability of daylight during standard work hours,” according to the Associated Press.

Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito said turning the lights off will “make us all a little more conscious of our carbon footprint.”

Setting aside the silliness of making people aware that there’s daylight during the day, this gesture is so pointless that they needn’t bother doing it. I’m so tired of the phrase “raising awareness.” “Raising awareness” is a euphemism for either “trying to make a change but being unable to do so” or “doing the bare minimum while still claiming to be helping a cause.” The City Council is one of the rare organizations that is actually capable of making policy changes, so for them to be “raising awareness” is patronizing. We are all aware of the impending climate apocalypse. Do something about it.

Besides, this doesn’t even “raise awareness.” It’s too small and pathetic of a gesture. If they really wanted to take a stand on the issue without having to pass laws, they would recycle their greywater or install solar panels on the roof. If they actually set an example and “raised awareness” by doing, maybe people would listen.

(Photo: Rep. Charlie Rangel)