Environmentalists, I share the aim but I find certain actions harmful and incomprehensible. Here because

But who are these guys really? “environmentalists” of the latest generation who, in the name of the survival of the planet, block the roads, attack works of art and smear the door of the Senate? It’s becoming now a political issue: for the right they are “gretini” provocateurs, for the left they are instead heroes.

One thing is certain: their denunciation is sacrosanct, as demonstrated more and more every day by the failures caused by a development model based on the destruction of natural resources and biodiversity, of which the prevailing climatic upheaval is the most evident symptom. And it is equally evident that our country, beyond the chatter and some warm rags, has no intention of intervening to stop this race to the abyssor. Indeed, it is even postponing the (few) measures decided at EU and international level by planning, among other things, a massive return to fossil fuels (with attention to nuclear power) and guaranteeing impunity to those who continue to destroy health and the environment, such as proves the Ilva case.

But, once it is stated that the purpose is valid and shareable, it does not seem that the same can be said of the strategy adopted to reach it.

It is not by damaging precious works of art or by blocking some road for an hour that one changes something or obtains consensus. In fact, you risk getting the exact opposite effect. And also the recent change of strategywith the “washable” soiling of the palaces of power, if on the one hand it certainly appears better centered as it is less invasive and clearly indicates the “enemies”, on the other it does not seem able to produce no real effect on government political choices; also because it does not identify precise objectives to be achieved and appears to be an end in itself.

After all, in the past, environmentalists – the traditional ones – repeatedly protested they also broke the laws; but they have always been careful to do so with actions that clearly identified precise objectives and precise enemies, soliciting the collaboration of all the polluted people. Because environmentalism – the real one – wins only if it manages to increase the involvement, reasoning ability and culture of all citizens, not if it incomprehensible, harmful or useless actions which, at most, lead to obtaining some newspaper headlines.

That’s how we won the referendum against nuclear power and, more recently, we have obtained the constitutional guarantee that “the Republic protects the environment, biodiversity and ecosystems, also in the interest of future generations”; where finally the concern for what world we will leave to our children is highlighted at the highest level. Indeed, in my humble opinion, it is precisely from this very clear and recent constitutional recognition that we must move (all) to request its immediate observance and application; with the revision of existing laws and the promulgation of new ones clearly aimed at protecting the environment and future generations. And, again in my subdued opinion, it is precisely on these objectives that the environmentalists of yesterday and today can set up strong initiatives and mass mobilisations. With the awareness that in any case all this is not enough if at the same time it is not possible to connect them with a collective reflection on the current dogmas of growth, the market and the GDP, which leads to a redefinition of the concepts of “progress” and “development”.

As the encyclical underlines well Laudato si’, it is certainly not realistic “to expect those who are obsessed with maximizing profits to stop and think about the environmental effects they will leave for future generations”; and therefore “a real change strategy it demands to rethink the totality of processes, since it is not enough to insert superficial ecological considerations while not questioning the underlying logic of current culture”.

In short, again in my subdued opinion, the protest makes sense if it appears immediately understandable and is not limited to the objective scenic effect but induces citizens to think with one’s own head and wondering what to do to carry it forward. As long as she does it quickly.

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