“If by bringing awareness to the totality of the situation instead of glorifying your safety and serenity you infer that I am somehow manifesting the apocalypse it is you who suffers from illusions. We end the joblessness by paying workers a living wage to harvest fruits and vegetables instead of plowing them under. We use workers to turn deserts into fields with wind powered wells and irrigation...start with hemp for paper and stop cutting down forests. We get the kids out of cages and into proper orphanages from where their parents may be located and reunited with them. There is no such thing as normal anymore and hasn't been since Kennedy was killed or have you been living under a rock? The GOP is a terrorist organization in the south and an enemy of women everywhere. This is not merely a pandemic; it is a plague.
Bemoaning? Sorry the truth hurts your delicate sensibility.
Go look at the stars.”
“How does the video promote any more of an idealistic fantasy than the future you posit (and which I agree is a way forward)? Attacking in anger is one way of responding. Another is to inquire and change people's minds so that they see the reality of the current situation and the opportunity this pandemic provides for positive change. Looking at the stars is not at odds with transforming frustration and anger into taking compassionate action. In fact, it might help.”
An opinion piece
reflects on Laurie Garrett's thoughts on what might be coming next - a 36 month event horizon with micro-waves of resurgence, collective rage caused by mass unemployment, frustration at the ineptitude and lack of caring of government, and anger at restrictions on social life and commerce.
The angry rage is already here on both the right and left. There is a taste of it in the exchange above and in the demonstrations against social distancing mandates.
Anger and personal attacks will do nothing to create a future in which people can live together harmoniously and healthily in a supportive environment, with enough to eat and livable shelter.
Using the energy of anger to fuel understanding and compassionate action is more likely to work. Transforming emotional energy requires personal consciousness with the capacity and commitment to speak and act civilly, without personal attacks and alienating generalizations. Name calling and labeling others as terrorists is easy. It blows off steam. But it puts more distance between people. The last thing we need is more people digging into their positions because they are angry and afraid.
What Can the Future Bring?
Yuval Harari in his book
Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow
paints a believable picture of a future built on our capacity to use science and technology to end famine, plague and war. That future does not necessarily promise an Eden in which the benefits of health sciences, AI and robotics flow to all. He warns of the rise of a "useless class" no longer needed for work and an elite made up of humans who have been genetically "
" and who use algorithms rather than consciousness to make decisions. This could result in a gap that dwarfs the current wealth gap. Harari writes "The way humans treated animals is a good indicator for how upgraded humans will treat us."
The future is uncertain. Though, we can influence it by speaking out, remembering and teaching humanistic values, choosing effective leadership, and promoting wise and compassionate action. We can reject greedy self-serving leaders trying to hold onto their power.
Are We On Our Way?
We may already be on our way to a more perfect future. Smog and pollution have disappeared as we shelter in place. Environmental, social and governance (ESG) consciousness and economic circularity
are becoming mainstream and merging with increased mindful awareness and the emotional and social intelligence it brings.
Some corporate leadership and investors are seeing how a physically healthy environment, equitable and caring social action and intelligent governance are economically viable. Over hopefully not too much time we will see industries that pollute and profit from waste die out and we will see that adequate shelter, food, education and healthcare can be provided without the distortion of old political ideologies.
At the same time there are others who will resist change that threatens their profits and restricts their freedom to pollute and poison.
To avoid a dire future, we must transform the energy of fear, anger and frustration into something more effective. To work toward a future in which we use science and technology to benefit all it will take wisdom, courage and skill and the ability to be resilient in the face of uncertainty and disruption.