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Is Insulate Britain the improper group to promote the precise message?

If you’ve been driving around London in the past fortnight, “you’ve probably witnessed a very special kind of stupidity,” Noel Yaxley said on Reaction.life.

On several occasions, protesters have blocked M25 junctions, thrown paint, stuck themselves on the streets and created hours of chaos for commuters. The responsible group Insulate Britain – an offshoot of Extinction Rebellion – is calling for immediate measures to isolate the house.

Most of us want to do what’s right for the environment, but it’s hard to see how the inconvenience of a group of “upper-middle-class activists” will move things forward. Zealots should at least practice what they preach, Zoe Strimpel told the Sunday Telegraph. It tended to undermine the group’s credibility when their spokesman, Liam Norton, was asked on television whether his own house was isolated – and first refused to answer, then stormed off.

🚨INSULATE UK RETURNS TO BLOCK THE M25 FOR THE 3rd TIME THIS WEEK This follows an action on Tuesday at Heathrow and two actions yesterday in Swanleyhttps: // t.co/vdzwKoU8mI

– Isolate UK (@InsulateLove) September 30, 2021

While these protests are “exciting and counterproductive,” the underlying principle is entirely correct, Janice Turner told The Times. We have some of the most energy inefficient houses in Europe. And with gas prices soaring, it’s “ridiculous” that our homes are losing heat all winter.

Unfortunately, Insulate Britain – a quirky “sect” with megalomania – is the wrong group to sell the message to. I fully support her mission, said Pravina Rudra in the London Evening Standard, but her methods require finesse. “If your mother is partially paralyzed by a stroke because it took her six hours to get to the emergency room, as is supposedly done before, you are hardly convinced of the cause.”

The thing is, “Protest is supposed to be disruptive,” said David J. Bailey in The i Paper. The evidence shows that this type of direct action is far more effective than non-disruptive tactics like petitions or normal demonstrations. “Many of our rights today have been won through disruptive protests: women’s rights, black rights and LGBTQ rights.” More recently, check out the Gilets Jaunes in France.

Of course there are reasonable limits, but a little irritation on the roads hardly seems disproportionate. “Business as usual” ultimately leads to a climate catastrophe. That would be “more than just an irritation”.

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