Out with the old…

Today we went for a walk…Sunday afternoon, and the sun was working its way out from behind the clouds.  The trees are fully in bloom here, bursting with little pink, white, and yellow flowers, while the willows sway more heavily with their distinctively chartreuse foliage.  The fragility of spring is extraordinary; it is its freshness, its newness that makes it sing for us – the promise that it cannot stay.

But spring has been strange this year.

I remind myself that it’s now 2012.  That we’re battling climate change at every turn, that a normal spring day is anything but in almost every corner of the world – here it’s no different. We’ve got some mighty fish to fry as a species (and better off if we changed the menu to tofu, I might add). And yet we’re still weighed down by the same old shit.  In the midst of this very real battle for life as we know it, there is still the rank stench of racism on both sides of the Atlantic, from the Trayvon Martin case and the potentially hate-driven murders in Tulsa, to increasing accusations of blatantly racist behavior on the part of the Metropolitan Police. There is still finger-pointing, for example, from men like John Derbyshire, who cannot accept that things are still terribly wrong and he is, in fact, part of the problem.  There is still blame-laying, for example, from an Israeli government arguably too quick to use the word ‘antisemitic’ rather than consider that many great thinkers of the world condemn their behavior. There are still far too many people dying in what seem to me to be very unfair circumstances indeed.

The good guys remain quite difficult to pick out, as well.

What’s with all this doom and gloom in the middle of the year’s sprightliest season?  Is it enough to tell ourselves that this is the way it is because this is the way it’s always been?  Because I think that’s too easy.  Things have changed, and not just climatically.  Same-sex marriage is legal in ten countries and six-soon-to-be-eight U.S. American states.  Women still earn significantly less on average than our brothers for the same jobs with the same qualifications, but in the U.S., we’re doing better in university and are more likely to attend, so the tables just might turn on that one – better yet, the odds might even out.  And while the world does not react heroically as I wish it (we) would to atrocities taking place in every city, every nation, every day, those atrocities are being called out more loudly than ever before.  The media may twist, but they also deliver information – how we interpret it, what we believe, and what we choose to do with that is up to us.

And, as we walked today, the birds were downright twitterpated.  The air was brisk, but the sun was bright. Fishermen fished and insects crept along, and things were very much as I’m sure they’ve always been on Easter around these parts.

There are, no doubt, a lot of things wrong in the world right now.  Whether there are more troubles now than before, I don’t know, but I do know we can’t let our guard down yet, and we’ve a long way to go, with a lot less time to dilly-dally than we might’ve thought we had in the past.  I think I speak for the vast majority of the species when I say that the most extraordinary parts of this life revolve around creation…of ideas, life, love, solutions.  That isn’t to say that winter won’t come – it will – but perhaps if we keep focused we’ll figure out how to keep winter in its own place, in its own time, and let spring get on with it.

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0 thoughts on “Out with the old…

  1. suncitymom says:

    Lots of thoughts to ponder…….it would be nice to think that we left this world in a better way than our forefathers….that we succeeded in ways they failed. But, in my limited view of things from a cloistered retirement community; I am of the opinion that we did not succeed. The cost of education in the U.S. has sky rocketed to the point that it has limited the masses to even try. Whereas Europe has developed trade schools starting in high school, we did not follow suit. A large percentage of our high school graduates are not capable or not trained to do anything but menial, service, entry type jobs…..the civility of our government has been decimated by the current congress and has lost all respect, (I should say—what little respect it had to start with). Our President has been bad mouthed, criticized, put down, laughed at, ignored, humiliated, all while taking on an almost impossible job of cleaning up the mess he was handed. So, our hope has to be in YOUR generation to try to change the things we would not, could not, or simply didn’t want to change, even though it would have been better for our fellow man.

  2. ann says:

    and yet i wonder if my generation is capable…there was a time when we thought it might be us…maybe it will be yet…maybe we’re not up to the task, either.

  3. This a very thought-out post, which great links too. I found the link to the 1 day vegetarian very interesting. As with great pieces, it leaves you with many questions to ponder, thanks Ann.

  4. ann says:

    thanks, max! kind words as usual…dunno if it was all that thought out…more of an unfocused rant! hehe…speak soon.

  5. Victor Halsig says:

    Dear One – Don’t agree that the martin-Zimmerman thing is really a matter of racism. In a sense it might be better if it were. Then we could at least identify what went on there. Fact is that Zimmerman is Latino-Caucasian, his reference to Trayvon’s being black was in response to a question from 911 (which NBC personnel doctored as is now old news), and all I can see is that this Zimmerman guy was out wanting simply to kill somebody – anybody. I think what we see here is a totally stressed out spaced out guy full of anger who just wanted to kill somebody so he could “feel better” or something. I do not believe that this matter is “second degree murder” nor do I think Murder One is totally accurate. Murder One is when you mean to kill somebody in particular or when you do it in the process of committing another crime (like robbery). In this case all we have is a kid who went out to buy some icecream and a deranged (evil) person who just killed him at random. Devilish behavior. And forget about the hood, too, since it was raining. You are right in one sense, though. Whatever was happening with Zimmerman seems to be happening with the world. It’s even scary to drive around here. People threaten you with their SUVs all the time – and that’s not paranoia. It seems similar to what set off that mess in Hitler’s Germany and Stalin’s Gulags. God help us.

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