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Kalamazoo teacher goes on hunger strike

Author Susan Burton struggled with disordered eating for decades. <em>"</em>Hunger was something that I believed protected me and gave me power," she says.
Author Susan Burton struggled with disordered eating for decades. <em>"</em>Hunger was something that I believed protected me and gave me power," she says.

A Kalamazoo teacher began a hunger strike on Monday to protest likely cuts to President Joe Biden’s climate agenda.

Kalamazoo Central High School teacher Josh Gottlieb says he’ll go without food for a week. The 46-year-old is also picketing on Drake Road near the school. Gottlieb says Democrats must not pare down the climate provisions in Biden’s infrastructure bill. They’re under threat after Democratic Senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia said he opposed the bill’s key program for cutting greenhouse gas emissions. But Gottlieb says Biden’s climate proposal was already modest.

“The longer we go without taking this problem seriously the more people are going to die, the more climate refugees we’re going to have and the less control we’re all going to have over what happens in the future.”

Gottlieb says he’s inspired by activists who started an indefinite hunger strike outside the White House last week, to urge immediate action on climate change.