Today’s atmosphere of division and cultural conflict occurs at a very bad time. We live in a time of unprecedented, accelerating technological change, environmental disruption, and wealth disparity. In this time of heightened fear and uncertainty, things could turn catastrophic very quickly. On the other hand, the unprecedented knowledge and resources we possess could set the stage for humanity’s greatest era. We are poised at the threshold of our brightest times, or our darkest times. That is why now, more than ever, we need to heed MLK’s call to treat each other as brothers and sisters.
I try to publish an e-mail newsletter regularly as a means of sharing and discussing current events with friends and colleagues. I haven’t published one lately because I haven’t known where to begin. As soon as I decide to write about one travesty occurring in our world, an even greater one seems to rear its ugly head. Viral pandemic. Economic collapse. Police brutality. Climate destruction. Racial subjugation. Military misapplication. Voter suppression. Tribal politics. Failing alliances. Following the rate of real and potential disasters is like drinking from a fire hose – it’s just too much.
I don’t attend a lot of funerals, but when I do, I’m often struck by the same thing: even if I’ve known the departed for a long time, I’m amazed by the amount of new information I gain from the obituary. And when I receive this new information, a lot of what I have experienced with the person suddenly falls into place, and I find myself wishing that we’d had deeper conversations while they were alive. “I wish I had known…”
When I heard last week that my friend Brenda Perryman was hospitalized with the Coronavirus, I was concerned, but not fearful. Unfortunately, last night Brenda succumbed to the Coronavirus.
Yesterday, as I was walking through town reflecting on the movie “The Green Book,” I remembered an article I wrote back in 2003 that recalled one of my own experiences with travel in the racially segregated South.
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