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The morning of July 3, 2015, marked the kick off for Stampede here in Calgary, which was the perfect opportunity for some direct action in front of Canada’s politicians.

Both Notley (above) and Nenshi rode in the parade, while Justin Trudeau and Stephen Harper were watching from the sidelines. We can only hope they were listening.

CBC crew deliberately turn away from the parade and the climate action banner to focus on the children.

Apparently the issue of climate change is not considered newsworthy. I could hardly believe as watched as the CBC camera crew deliberately turn away from the banner which read “HARPER, TRUDEAU, MULCAIR. CALGARY WANTS: JOBS. JUSTICE. CLIMATE ACTION.” to focus instead on the smiling faces of the children in the crowd.

The Bow Building, Head Office of EnCana, towers in the background. In the foreground, mainstream media ignores a Climate Action Banner to focus on the smiling children in the crowd. Calgary Stampede Parade, 2015.

A group of activists entered the parade during a gap between floats, and walked their banner down the block before Calgary Police escorted the group from the route.


A peaceful action in solidarity with so many others across the country and across the world. JOBS. JUSTICE. CLIMATE ACTION marched July 5, 2015, in Toronto.

While I was taking photographs I briefly chatted with the young boy beside me, who was deeply concerned about the police presence. I overheard him say to his mother “I don’t trust the police… look at all their guns,” and then he reiterated his concerns to his grandmother. “I don’t trust the police.”

It broke my heart to see someone so young already so fearful. Despite his worries, the CPS were nice enough as they escorted the group off the parade route. Still, these are the children who will have to clean up the mess of today’s politicians — and they are already concerned about the status quo.

We have a simple message: WE > TAR SANDS.


This blog and photos originally appeared on Burning Water and is reprinted with permission.

Aiyana is a freelancer blogger creating content for a number of platforms, as well as speaking out and organizing projects to raise awareness. Contact Aiyana by email: [email protected]