‘That’s what happens when you improvise speeches in a second language….’
Thunberg, 16, was criticizing politicians who have dismissed her climate alarmism to a crowd of young supporters this week, urging them to hold their leaders accountable.
“We have to make sure that they cannot do that,” Thunberg told the crowd. “We will make sure they, that we put them against the wall, and that they will have to do their job and to protect our futures.”
After facing backlash, Thunberg blamed her comments on the translation, and said that in Swedish the phrase doesn’t have a violent connotation.
“Yesterday I said we must hold our leaders accountable and unfortunately said ‘put them against the wall’. That’s Swenglish: “att ställa någon mot väggen” (to put someone against the wall) means to hold someone accountable,” she said. “That’s what happens when you improvise speeches in a second language.”
… improvise speeches in a second language.
But of course I apologise if anyone misunderstood this. I can not enough express the fact that I – as well as the entire school strike movement- are against any possible form of violence. It goes without saying but I say it anyway.
— Greta Thunberg (@GretaThunberg) December 14, 2019
Thunberg also added that she will be taking a break from climate activism.
“I will be home for Christmas and then I will take a holiday break because you need to take a rest,” she said, according to Reuters. “Otherwise you cannot do this all the time.”
Earlier this week, Time magazine named Thunberg its “Person of the Year,” despite the fact that she admitted last month that she has accomplished “basically nothing.”
“She became the biggest voice on the biggest issue facing the planet this year, coming from essentially nowhere to lead a worldwide movement,” Time Editor-in-Chief Edward Felsenthal said on Wednesday. “She embodies youth activism.”