NON-violent direct civil disobedience, as practised by Extinction Rebellion, has a long and honourable history in bringing about change, writes Christine Stockwell.

It is usually (as here) taken when people feel they have exhausted all the usual legal channels for drawing attention to injustice and concerns for people’s health, wellbeing or safety.

We have all benefitted as a result.

So, Mr Cooke, and everyone, instead of focussing on your indignation about methods used, would you consider adopting a different response?

Set aside your concerns for now, and instead take courage; listen to the message and understand the gravity of the situation being highlighted.

To give an analogy: imagine your house was in a high risk fire zone and that under certain circumstances your house could catch fire - endangering you, your family, neighbours and friends.

Imagine you also knew that the fire service was inadequately resourced and not up to dealing with a serious blaze.

Would you not try to secure government action to enable the service to be as effective as possible?

Whilst you and other residents can take some actions to try to prevent a blaze, that is not enough.

Government intervention is needed to control individual actions eg banning camp fires; but also to put in place immediately as many measures as necessary, both to prevent a blaze, or to deal with it quickly and safely should the worst happen.

We expect our government to understand the threat and act speedily and appropriately.

Now imagine you and others have been trying to convince government to act and the danger season is approaching.

Would you not do whatever you could to alert people and government to the imminent danger and insist they act now?

That is what Extinction Rebellion and the Young People’s Strike is about.

Trying to keep us all safe.

Christine Stockwell