72 per cent of XR members don’t agree with disrupting the Underground
You just can’t stop them
Three quarters of Extinction Rebellion members don’t agree with disrupting the Underground, a poll has revealed, after an XR protest on the tube led to a rush hour brawl.
72 per cent thought it was a “bad idea, no matter how it’s done”, according to an internal poll of nearly 4000 XR members reported by the Guardian.
Commuters yanked two protestors from the top of a London Underground train at Canning Town tube station during rush hour, whilst an 83-year-old XR activist glued himself to a train at Shadwell.
— Mahatir Pasha (@mahatir_pasha) October 17, 2019
London Underground staff shielded the protestors from irate commuters at Canning Town, with the action dividing opinion inside and outside of XR.
The anonymous internal poll of 3,824 XR members found that overall, only 11 per cent approved of the action.
Seven per cent said they only approved if trains wouldn’t get blocked underground, whilst four per cent said Affinity Groups could decide how to go about it.
14 per cent said they opposed if people might be blocked underground.
Three per cent didn’t know.
Here's the results of an internal Poll regarding train disruption. These people do not represent the wider views of those supporting the XR movement.
We all have to do something about the climate emergency, but please don't take a polarised view based on the actions of a few. pic.twitter.com/Outlra0Gim
— The Good(ish) Life Norfolk (@Thegoodishlife1) October 17, 2019
XR has no central structure or defined leaders – its most prominent figures are referred to as “co-founders”, including former King’s College London PhD student Roger Hallam.
Instead, the movement is split into autonomous “Affinity Groups”. Larger actions, such as the mass occupations in central London, are co-ordinated between several Affinity Groups. However individual protests, such as disrupting trains, can be done by a single, smaller group, despite disapproval from the wider XR movement.
Over 1,500 people have been arrested so far during XR’s October protests.
Despite a ban by the police, the group have continued to cause disruption. On Tuesday, student activists staged a “sleep-in” at King’s College London.