New York Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez recently said many people of her age view the battle against climate change in the same way as World War II and claimed “the world is gonna end in 12 years” if laws aren’t passed to tackle it.
Ocasio-Cortez was speaking to journalist Ta-Nehisi Coates at Riverside Church in Manhattan on Monday at a special forum marking Martin Luther King Day. She told Coates that people of her age view climate change as “our World War II,” according to the Daily Mail.
She slammed those she viewed as opposing steps to address climate change asking, “your biggest issue is how are we going to pay for it?” and stressed that she believed we have reached a breaking point on climate change.
In the same interview, she also addressed the American economic system, claiming it was “immoral” and that it “allowed billionaires to exist.”
“It is not to say that someone like Bill Gates, for example, or Warren Buffett are immoral people,” she quickly clarified. “‘I do not believe that… but 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.”
“I think that it’s wrong that a vast majority of the country does not make a living great wage,” she continued. “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, they can get paid by the government essentially, experience a wealth transfer from the public for paying people less than a minimum wage.”
Ocasio-Cortez’s positions have proved popular with a lot of younger voters. She has gained around 2.5 million followers on Twitter and is reportedly also training more experienced Democratic congressmen and women on how to use the social media platform more effectively.
She has also proposed a number of legislative initiatives which seek to tackle the issues she has been raising, including the suggestion to increase taxes on the wealthy in order to fund a “Green New Deal.”
On the same day, Ocasio-Cortez was interviewed on the Late Show with Stephen Colbert on CBS. Colbert showed her an Instagram post she has put up of her eating from a tub of ice cream after a tough day in the office.
He then pulled out two tubs of his own brand of Ben and Jerry’s ice cream – Stephen Colbert’s AmeriCone Dream – before inviting her to discuss her first three weeks in Congress.