On Monday, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez told a group gathered for Martin Luther King Day event that addressing climate change is this generation’s World War II.
Ocasio-Cortez was a guest at the fourth annual MLK Now event hosted in New York City on Monday where she was interviewed by author and journalist Ta-Nehisi Coates.
Other guests at the event included anti-Trump journalist Jemele Hill and musician Samora Pinderhughes.
During a question-and-answer session between Ocasio-Cortez and Coates, the conversation shifted to climate change, and Ocasio-Cortez suggested that the world would end in 12 years if the country didn’t address the issue.
Ocasio-Cortez told Coates, “And I think the part of it that is generational is that millennials and people, in Gen Z, and all these folks that come after us are looking up and we’re like, the world is gonna end in 12 years if we don’t address climate change.”
She then told Coates that this was her generation’s World War II.
“Your biggest issue, your biggest issue is how are we going to pay for it? — and like this is the war, this is our World War II,” she said.
— Tom Elliott (@tomselliott) January 22, 2019
Ocasio-Cortez then shifted the conversation to other social issues such as criminal justice reform and income inequality.
She said, “And I think for younger people, we’re looking at this are we’re like, how are we saying ‘let’s take it easy’ when 3,000 Americans died last year? How are we saying, ‘let’s take it easy’ when the nth person died from our cruel and unjust criminal justice system?
“How are we saying, ‘take it easy,’ when the America that we’re living in today is so dystopian with people sleeping in their cars so they can work a second job without health care, and we’re told to settle down,” she added.
In answer to another question, according to Fox News, Ocasio-Cortez described her problems with “billionaires” in the United States.
She told Coates, “I do think a system that allows billionaires to exist when there are parts of Alabama where people are still getting ringworm because they don’t have access to public health is wrong.”
While she did state that not all billionaires are “immoral,” she said, “I think that it’s wrong that a vast majority of the country does not make a living great wage. I think it’s wrong that you can work 100 hours and not feed your kids. I think it’s wrong that corporations like Walmart and Amazon can get paid.”
Ocasio-Cortez suggested that corporations like Amazon and Walmart get “paid” by the government.
“They can get paid by the government essentially, experience a wealth transfer from the public for paying people less than a minimum wage,” she said.
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.