This 17-year-old Aztec rapper is in the midst of releasing his debut album while suing the Trump administration — here’s why.
Posted by NBC Latino on Thursday, September 21, 2017
He is fighting his generation’s fight to protect the environment.
Xiuhtezcatl Martinez is a 17-year-old rapper and environmental activist who is the leader of Earth Guardians, a group of young people fighting for legislation to protect the environment against the Trump administration’s agenda. He and 20 other young activists have filed a lawsuit against the United States government, claiming that the administration is not doing enough to protect them from the impacts of climate change. He is also dropping his rap debut, an album that stresses the importance of standing up for what you believe in and what you want to protect. In Martinez’ case, that is the environment.
“We’re using the stories, which is the passion, which is the emotion that gets people to move, Martinez told NBC Latino. “Then there’s the science behind it as well, working with top climate scientists to build a comprehensive climate recovery plan. That’s what we’re demanding from the government.”
Martinez understands that everyone can’t completely pause their lives to fight for the things they are passionate about. What Martinez suggests, according to the NBC Latino video, is for people to use professions to bring attention to causes they care about.
You can learn more about Xiuhtezcatl Martinez and Earth Guardians by tapping here.
There are growing concerns in California’s Sierra Nevada mountains due to illegal pesticides that are being used for illegal marijuana-growing sites in the area. Law enforcement officials on Tuesday announced major operations are underway targeting these sites. Officials say that Mexican drug traffickers are the culprits behind the marijuana grows and have already discovered close to 25,000 marijuana plants cultivated illegally within California’s national forests in the last month.
“These are federal lands, and they are being systematically destroyed through clear-cutting, stream diversion, chemicals, and pesticides,” U.S. Attorney McGregor Scott said at a news conference.
Law enforcement is most concerned about the pesticide, carbofuran, that is being used on these plants. The pesticide is toxic to wildlife and humans and can cause permanent reproductive damage.
While the large marijuana grow is enough to cause concern for law enforcement, the banned pesticide, Carbofuran, being used is making matters worse. According to Quartz, the substance was very common for farmers as it was once sprayed on American corn, cotton, potatoes, sunflowers, and other crops. The pesticide in question was pulled off the legal U.S. market more than a decade ago due to its deadly harm. It’s also been known to cause permanent damage to human nervous and reproductive systems and is toxic to wildlife and waterways.
The pesticide also happened to kill more birds in the U.S. than any other pesticide ever known. It would also be banned in Europe, Canada, and Brazil, shortly after.
Carbofuran has been a continuing problem in California despite its ban. The pesticide has been a known favorite for illegal pot operators, nine out of every 10 illegal pot farms raided in California were found to be using it last year, according to the Associated Press.
Another issue that has risen is the water usage that these illegal cannabis farms in California are wasting. The LA Times notes that on average one illegal farm uses a minimum of 5.4 million gallons of water annually to cultivate 6,000 plants.
“Water is the most important issue in California, and the amount being used to grow an illegal product in the national forest is mind-boggling It’s a vitally important issue,” Scott said.
Investigators say there’s been a spike in illegal marijuana grows in California that is being operated by Mexican drug traffickers.
The news conference came less than two days after two men from Michoacan, Mexico, Lester Eduardo Cardenas Flores, and Luis Reyes Madrigal, were caught operating an illegal marijuana-growing site in the Sierra Mountains. Both men were formally charged Tuesday in Fresno federal court with conspiracy to manufacture and distribute large quantities of marijuana.
Scott says illegal immigrants from Mexico have been a common theme when it comes to finding these marijuana operations. Both Madrigal and Flores were illegal immigrants and were linked to other Mexican marijuana traffickers. The penalty for both of their charges could be anywhere from 10 years to life in prison.
“We’ve prosecuted hundreds of person, without exception..they’re all here illegally and all undocumented from Mexico,” Scott said.”We want to find the people funding these operations.”
There is hope that these latest arrests send a signal to traffickers and legislative change follows as well.
Marijuana-growing sites being connected to Mexican drug groups have been a growing issue for years. But Scott says with the recent spike of chemical use being found it only adds to the urgency of shutting these operations down. Back in July, agents and officers from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife closed in on another illegal grow operation deep within the Stanislaus National Forest. The raid turned up with over 2,500 marijuana plants and one loaded handgun.
While this has been an issue for years, officials says with the legalization of recreational marijuana in California back in 2016. Environmentalists and scientists agree that legalization of the cultivation of marijuana could be the best solution to prevent this from happening in the future. But for now, this is an issue that law enforcement doesn’t see stopping anytime soon.
“I want to be perfectly clear, none of what we are talking about is legal under anyone’s marijuana laws,” Scott said. “This isn’t about the marijuana, it’s about the damage that’s being done. What is happening here is illegal under anybody’s law. Everything that we are talking about is as equally illegal under California law as it under federal law.”
If you haven’t already heard about it, Brazil’s Amazon rain forest is currently being ravaged by devastating large-scale wild-fires. According to recent reports and the country’s National Institute for Space Research, there has been a 77% increase in the number of fires burning in the area this year. No doubt, this large scale destruction is because of climate change. Done with being quiet, celebrities have been attempting to raise awareness of the destruction of the rainforest and its beautiful ecosystems through the hashtag #PrayForAmazonia.
The hashtag was created by environmentalist Nick Rose Dertsas, and hopefully, it will catch on quickly.
The environmentalist expressed his outrage over the lack of media coverage over the tragedy in a post to Instagram.
“Terrifying to think that the Amazon is the largest rain forest on the planet, creating 20% of the earth’s oxygen, basically the lungs of the world, has been on fire and burning for the last 16 days running, with literally NO media coverage whatsoever! Why? @unitednations who is running your page? Influences??? Where are you when it actually matters????? @cnn@bbc@guardian@forbes#deforestation#climatechangePLEASE REPOST,” he wrote.
Camila Cabello caught wind of the post after it was retweeted by actor Leonardo DiCaprio.
“This is heartbreaking and terrifying 💔💔💔 This makes me want to cry with frustration. what are we DOING? We’re literally destroying our miracle of a home 😭😭😭 I’m so sorry, earth 💔💔💔#AmazonRainforest#Repost@leonardodicaprio with @get_repost ・・・ #Regram#RG@IamNickRose: Terrifying to think that the Amazon is the largest rain forest on the planet, creating 20% of the earth’s oxygen, basically the lungs of the world, has been on fire and burning for the last 16 days running, with literally NO media coverage whatsoever! Why?” Cabello wrote in her repost.
Cabello’s former girl group mate also shared the post.
“Although I’ll admit prayer helps me breathe most days, It can’t quite do the same job the Amazon in Brazil does for the human populace (not to mention all the life forms on this planet that also need oxygen to survive.) The Amazon has been burning for the past almost 3 weeks with little to no media coverage. The Amazon is responsible for 20% of our oxygen. Gaia is screaming. We are truly so disrespectful to our children, and our grandchildren, and their children. Awareness is one thing but I truly wanna know when we’re all going to wake up and feel the poison in our lungs. I honor mama Gaia today and pray for our collective healing and growth towards understanding that this is our only home. We borrow it from our children, and the mess we have made on it is so carelessly destructive. All in the name of the almighty dollar. It alarms me that so many in possession of power on this planet truly do not care about or even believe in the crisis we face. It pains me that they continue to deny, suppress truth and spew out false information. To roll back policies that protect our environment and native people’s rights all while profiting off the lands and people they continue to destroy. What is happening in the Amazon, what is happening in Hawaii, is all connected. We should all be paying very close attention to the way our chosen leaders treat the planet we live on and only have one of. We should be very very aware during election season so closely upon us, but we should also be figuring out ways to be conscious of our environment and our interaction with it every day. My heart hurts for all the animals whose homes have been destroyed, for all of the indigenous peoples who have been affected by the loss of this land, for all of the unique plant life and beauty that we have just lost as a collective family on this planet. Offering up all the healing energy I can muster. ❤️🙏🏼✨” Jauregui wrote in a post about the fires.
Songstress Ellie Golding also posted about the fires.
“There was worldwide outcry when Notre Dame was on fire,” she wrote highlighting the way so many were quick to pour funding, tears and support for the building of the Catholic structure in Europe. Her post highlights how little care there is not only for the environment but also for institutions in Latin America.
Today he president of Brazil announced that the government would not have enough funding to fight the fires.
Here’s hoping our world leaders and institutions will reach out to Brazil and offer the same help that they did just a few months ago when Notre Dame was under fire.
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