A time for solidarity: The Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic must not become the occasion for a war of all against all. Blaming China, or immigrants, or the opposition party is a way to divide us just when we need to be united. Instead we need to reach out to each other and ensure that everyone—especially the most vulnerable—are fully protected. Remember: the life you save may be your own!

A time for sustainability: Our public health crisis and our economic crisis are the predictable result of policies that put private profit first and the needs of people and the environment last. We are paying the price in an unsustainable economy, society, and environment—by destroying our own future. Let us use this time of crisis to quit this foolish, self-destructive course and commit ourselves to creating a sustainable future by all means necessary.

A time for the Green New Deal:  Bankers, oil executives, and possibly drug company officials have been meeting secretly with President Donald Trump while healthcare workers are forced to do their work without minimal protective equipment and others must choose between working while sick or not paying their bills. Unless we act, the fight against Coronavirus will be turned into one more way for the rich to steal from the poor.

After the 2008 economic meltdown, millions chanted: “Banks got bailed out—we got sold out.” Will we soon hear the chant: “Corporations got bailed out—we got Coronavirus”? The answer this time must be NO.

All emerging stimulus money must go to helping people and putting our planet on a sustainable basis. It must go, in short, for the program of the Green New Deal. We echo and endorse the March 11 statement from the youth Sunrise Movement:

It’s hard to imagine a more compelling case for a Green New Deal, the only economic stimulus package that meets the urgency of this moment. Instead of responding the same way they did in 2008, with corporate bailouts that left millions unemployed and homeless, the government should be investing massively in public health infrastructure, guaranteeing federal jobs to all workers displaced, and employing millions to transform our energy, transportation, and food systems toward renewable energies that stabilize both our economy and our climate.


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