Meet the teens leading an unprecedented lawsuit against the U.S. government.

Out of all the things teenagers are known to do, suing the U.S. government isn't one of them.

Go ahead and add it to the list.

15-year-old Xiuhtezcatl Roske-Martinez and 20 other young people ages 8 to 20 have sued the government for its inaction on climate change — and so far they've been successful. This is, needless to say, unprecedented.


Two of the plaintiffs, Xiuhtezcatl and Victoria, react to the judge's decision.

"Judge Coffin decided our Complaint will move forward and put climate science squarely in front of the federal courts," said the plaintiffs' attorney, Philip Gregory.

The 21 young plaintiffs argue that this case is about their constitutional right to life, liberty, and property and that the government hasknown for decades that carbon dioxide pollution has been causing catastrophic climate change. Even with that knowledge, the government has failed to take action and do something about it to help future generations. In fact, the youths' complaint alleges the government has taken definite actions to make climate change worse.

They are having none of that.

When you hear Xiuhtezcatl talk, you realize it was only a matter of time.

All photos used with permission.

Xiuhtezcatl (pronounced "shu-TEZ-cuht") has been leading a youth movement to save the planet since he was ordering from the kids menu at the age of 6. He has assembled a global army of young people over the years with his organization Earth Guardians (which just keeps growing bigger!) to demand sustainable policy from world leaders. The Colorado-based organization has over 1,800 crews on six continents — and counting, partially thanks to social media.

In 2014, Xiuhtezcatl founded Rising Youth for Sustainable Environment (RYSE), a youth council that helps to plan, train, and execute an agenda to help combat climate change. Between the council's role in this federal lawsuit, which was filed on behalf of them by Our Children’s Trust, and the lawsuits they have on the way in other sates, it's clear they are onto something.

Not only does the lawsuit put pressure on world leaders, but the fossil fuel industry must also take it — and young people — seriously. Boom.

"When those in power stand alongside thevery industries that threaten the future of my generation instead of standing with the people, it is areminder that they are not our leaders," said Xiuhtezcatl. "The real leaders are the twenty youth standing with me in court todemand justice for my generation and justice for all youth."

Earth Guardians at Pittsburgh Power Shift in 2015.

For now, the plaintiffs have only been granted permission to argue the case in federal court. But hey, you have to start somewhere.

"Never before in the history of our laws have we seen a coordinated set of legal actions on this scale," said University of Oregon law professor Mary Wood.

It's inspiring to see these young people stand up for their generation and those that will follow. But when you talk to Xiuhtezcatl, you're reminded that they've been forced into this situation. Leaders have failed to act on climate change, so it's up to them to do something about it.

As he puts it, "We are the ones we've been waiting for."

So they'll do it themselves.

True

A lot of people here are like family to me," Michelle says about Bread for the City — a community nonprofit located in Washington DC that provides local residents with food, clothing, health care, social advocacy, and legal services. And since the pandemic began, the need to support organizations like Bread for the City is greater than ever, which is why Amazon is Delivering Smiles to local charities across the country this holiday season.

Watch the full story:

Amazon is giving back by fulfilling hundreds of AmazonSmile Charity Lists, and donating essential pantry and food items to help organizations like Bread for the City provide to those disproportionately impacted this year.

Visit AmazonSmile Charity Lists to donate directly to a local charity in your community, or simply shop smile.amazon.com and Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price of eligible products to your charity of choice.
via Brittany Kinley / Facebook

Brittany Kinley, a mother from Mansfield, Texas, had a hilarious mom fail her and she's chalking it up to being just another crazy thing that happened in 2020.

When Kinley filled out the order form for her son Mason's kindergarten class pictures, there was an option to have his name engraved into the photos. But Kinley wasn't interested in having her son's name on the photos so she wrote "I DON'T WANT THIS" on the box.

Well, it appears as though she should have left the box blank because the computer or incredibly literal human that designed the photographs wrote "I DON'T WANT THIS" where mason's name should be.

Keep Reading Show less
True

A lot of people here are like family to me," Michelle says about Bread for the City — a community nonprofit located in Washington DC that provides local residents with food, clothing, health care, social advocacy, and legal services. And since the pandemic began, the need to support organizations like Bread for the City is greater than ever, which is why Amazon is Delivering Smiles to local charities across the country this holiday season.

Watch the full story:

Amazon is giving back by fulfilling hundreds of AmazonSmile Charity Lists, and donating essential pantry and food items to help organizations like Bread for the City provide to those disproportionately impacted this year.

Visit AmazonSmile Charity Lists to donate directly to a local charity in your community, or simply shop smile.amazon.com and Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price of eligible products to your charity of choice.
via Twins Trust / Twitter

Twins born with separate fathers are rare in the human population. Although there isn't much known about heteropaternal superfecundation — as it's known in the scientific community — a study published in The Guardian, says about one in every 400 sets of fraternal twins has different fathers.

Simon and Graeme Berney-Edwards, a gay married couple, from London, England both wanted to be the biological father of their first child.

"We couldn't decide on who would be the biological father," Simon told The Daily Mail. "Graeme said it should be me, but I said that he had just as much right as I did."

Keep Reading Show less
via UDOT / Facebook

In December 2018, The Utah Department of Transportation opened the largest wildlife overpass in the state, spanning 320 by 50 feet across all six lanes of Interstate 80.

Its construction was intended to make traveling through the I-80 corridor in Summit County safer for motorists and the local wildlife.

The Salt Lake Tribune reports that there were over 100 animal incidents on the interstate since 2016, giving the stretch of highway the unfortunate nickname of "Slaughter Row."

Keep Reading Show less