No doubt you’ve heard the famous (and sadly fictional) story of the time Ralph Waldo Emerson visited Henry David Thoreau in jail. Thoreau, of course, was incarcerated because of an act of civil disobedience arising out of his opposition to the Mexican War. Emerson is supposed to have said to him, “Henry, why are you here?” To which Thoreau replied, “Waldo, why are you not here?”
I thought about this a few days ago while listening to a television discussion of global warming. For at least the thousandth time, I heard people who know what they’re talking about tell me of doom’s approach. And I didn’t doubt them. The science is overwhelming. We’re destroying this planet (or more accurately — we’re destroying our future on this planet and taking a lot of other species down with us), it’s that simple. And in cosmic terms, we’re doing it in the blink of an eye.
And even knowing this, we aren’t doing shit about it.
Here I am, the father of two young boys whose futures are literally being burned away by our stupidity. Yet, I’m doing precious little about it myself.
Why aren’t we all in the streets demanding action? Why aren’t we all engaged in forceful nonviolent civil disobedience?
Why aren’t we all in jail?
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A note from the management: I will make no promises. I’ve already broken too many here. I have every intention of bringing the café back to life, but exactly when and in what form remains to be seen. In the meanwhile, I’ll try to get short posts up more often to give regulars a better opportunity to talk among yourselves. It may sound corny, but I’ve been proud of the way you’ve carried on the conversation in my absence.