According to police, a Colorado man who lit himself on fire in front of the Supreme Court on Friday in an apparent Earth Day protest against climate change has died.
Wynn Bruce, 50, of Boulder, Colorado, died on Saturday from his injuries after being taken to a hospital following the incident, according to the Metropolitan Police Department of Washington, D.C.
According to Kritee Kanko, a climate scientist with the Environmental Defense Fund and a Zen Buddhist priest in Boulder, Mr Bruce is a friend, and the self-immolation was a deliberate act of protest.
“This act is not suicide,” Dr Kritee Tweeted. “This is a deeply fearless act of compassion to bring attention to the climate crisis.”
In an interview, she stated that she was unsure of his intentions but that “people are being driven to extreme amounts of climate grief and despair” and “what I do not want to happen is that young people start thinking about self-immolation.”
According to reports, Mr Bruce lit himself on fire on the plaza in front of the Supreme Court on Friday at 6:30 p.m.
Mr Bruce, a Buddhist, lit himself on fire in an evident honour to Vietnamese monks who burned themselves to death in protest during the Vietnam War. Dr Kritee identified Mr Bruce’s Facebook account as commemorating the death of Thich Nhat Hanh, an influential Zen Buddhist master and antiwar activist who died in January.
No one was hurt as a consequence of the incident, and the Supreme Court was not in operation at the time, according to sources. So perhaps Bruce opted not to harm federal officials.
Bruce isn’t the only one who is fed up with delay when dealing with environmental concerns, so let those in positions of power hear his message before it’s too late.