Credit: Twitter
Greta Thunberg Fans Beg Twitter Not to Turn Her Into a Meme: ‘She’s Too Pure for This Life’

Greta Thunberg Fans Beg Twitter Not to Turn Her Into a Meme: ‘She’s Too Pure for This Life’

A video showing 16-year-old Swedish activist Greta Thunberg delivering an emotional speech about climate change went viral on Monday, dominating headlines, social media chatter – and sparking the creation of memes.

“This is all wrong,” said Thunberg during a U.N. summit. “I shouldn’t be up here. I should be back in school on the other side of the ocean. Yet you all come to us young people for hope? How dare you!”

“You have stolen my dreams and my childhood with your empty words,” Thunberg added. “And yet I’m one of the lucky ones. People are suffering. People are dying. Entire ecosystems are collapsing. We are in the beginning of a mass extinction. And all you can talk about is money and fairy tales of eternal economic growth. How dare you!”

MORE: Trump’s ‘Hilarious’ Reaction to Teen Climate Activist’s Rant Goes Viral

After her speech, Thunberg happened to be in the lobby of U.N. headquarters when President Donald Trump arrived. Her scowl was captured by news cameras from around the world as they clamored around the president.

That moment also went viral and prompted yet more memes, to the chagrin of various Thunberg supporters.

“[S]he’s too pure for this life,” one commenter averred.

Many viewed the lighthearted memes as a deflation of the gravity of Thunberg’s message.


Richard Kim, enterprise director for HuffPost, finger-wagged at anyone who failed to take Thunberg, and climate change activists like her, seriously.

“The climate kids aren’t cute. They are furious. Greta Thunberg’s stern face isn’t a meme, it’s the face of righteous outrage. It’s a challenge,” Kim tweeted.

All these asshats sharing anti- Greta memes & making fun. Wow! Never saw so many grown white men scared of a little white girl,” wrote one user.

Ppl who are mocking Greta need to be ashamed of themselves. Read her story instead of posting memes,” tweeted another commenter.

Greta Thunberg memes

The reaction to Thunberg reflected the often partisan nature of the broader climate change debate.

Conservatives criticized what they perceived as her exploitation by adult activists. Liberals focused on the purported cruelty of those who would attack a child.

But many of the memes inspired by the teen activist transcended politics and veered into the neutral territory that is internet humor.

Memers used a variety of techniques to achieve their desired comedic effects.

Some simply captioned Thunberg’s speech to give it a different context:

Others resorted to re-dubbing Thunberg’s voice:

And some implemented more advanced audio and visual effects:

Nor was Thunberg’s speech the only moment to receive the meme treatment.

MORE: Trump’s Reaction to ‘Meeting’ Teen Climate Activist Goes Viral: ‘Greatest GIF in Human History’

Her encounter with Trump proved similarly memorable for clever internet users, who used it as a blank canvas upon which to paint with their wit.

Even some American politicians got in on the fun:

Cover image: Greta Thunberg. (Twitter)



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