Really, JetBlue?

Flickr/<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/joeshlabotnik/">Joe Shlabotnik</a>

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My roommate just gchatted me asking if I wanted to go with her to Austin tomorrow night and come back Wednesday morning. Um, excuse me? But wait, she told me, it gets better: The grand total cost for this jaunt: $20 round trip on JetBlue. My answer? Of course I want to go! I’ve always wanted to visit Austin, and the price is unbelievably right.

Well, I can’t go because of a bunch of other commitments, but believe me, I am tempted. I wondered if I could take a rain check, so I decided to do some googling on this amazing deal. I found out that the promotion, part of JetBlue’s anniversary sale, applies to certain flights this Tuesday and Wednesday only. Just for kicks, I looked up the emissions of a round trip flight from Oakland to Austin (2,987 miles) on TerraPass’ emissions calculator. The damage: 1,108 pounds of CO2. For the same carbon price, you could eat 175 cheeseburgers. Or go see 73 really dazzling stadium rock shows. Or…you get my drift.

Far be it from me to complain about cheap airfares—I fly a lot, and I’ve grumbled about paying more for last minute flights than I want to. But I’ve also been deterred by high fares, and considering the high carbon cost of flying, that’s probably a good thing. JetBlue professes to care about the environment. So why are they making it so easy (and tempting) to fly halfway across the country for dinner and a few drinks?

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And the truth is, going into the final 4 days of the year we still needed to raise $TK to hit our $350,000 goal and start 2021 on track. It's nerve-wracking, wondering if the big spike we normally see at the end of December is going to be another thing that doesn't go as planned in 2020, or worse, if, now that Donald Trump is set to leave the White House (for longer than a taxpayer-funded golf trip to a property he owns), folks might be pulling back from fighting for the truth and a democracy and think the hard work is done.

It's not, and if you can right now, please consider a year-end donation to support our team's fearless nonprofit journalism so we can close that big fundraising gap and finish the year strong, ready for all that's ahead in 2021. Whether you can give $5 or $500, it all matters in keeping us charging hard, and we'd be grateful.

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