‘The Time is Now’: Etienne Stott on His Arrest on Waterloo Bridge

I am very proud to have won the Olympics in London 2012. But it stands equal to my part in the April Rebellion in 2019.

I was arrested on Waterloo Bridge and the process was very calm. I was sat in the road and refused to leave when the Police asked me to. Knowingly breaking the law is a big step, but I had absolute clarity of mind; it was a considered, deliberate act.

As a civilisation we are heading for catastrophe and peaceful civil disobedience is the most effective thing I can do given the failure of our leaders to take appropriate action on the climate and ecological emergency. I was clear about whose future I was acting to safeguard. What I did was for the right reasons and it was a responsible and sensible thing to do, in the circumstances.

I received so much support and appreciation for what I did. People recognise it as a brave and principled stand. It felt good at the time to be doing something pro-active, but already with the benefit of hindsight I think that we altered the course of human history in those days.

I and thousands of others made sure our voices were heard and our leaders now know that they cannot just carry on as before. We must change course and the time is now.

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