Ever since I read Ta Nehisi Coates’ “Between the World and Me”, I am still struck by the closing section, and this , within that, stands out :
“The people who could author the mechanized death of our ghettos, the mass rape of our private prisons, then engineer their own forgetting, must inevitably plunder much more. This is not a belief in prophecy, but in the seductiveness of cheap gasoline.”
“Something more fierce than Marcus Garvey is riding on the whirlwind.”
“And the methods of transport through these new subdivisions, across the sprawl, is the automobile, the noose around the neck of the earth, and ultimately, the Dreamers themselves.”
I have since heard him try to broach the subject, like in a post-election discussion
Moderator Chris Jackson had just asked the panel “is the Democratic party, as currently constituted, the vehicle for the kind of change that we’re talking about?”. Coates said (around 54:00, “if you’re talking about the kind of long term….reform that some of us would like to see…..if you’re talking about….I’m just going to say it…..the ability to save the planet from global warming, you might need something more…you might need something a little more.”
No one on that panel said ONE WORD about that. Sherrilyn Ifill just completely changed the subject, and no one went back to that comment at all. When Coates prefaced his remarks with “I’m just going to say it”……one would think he thought it an important point. But it was dropped with what I perceived to be a big thud. I thought that at least Chris Hayes would have taken up the subject. But he did not, and no one else picked up on this, despite it was obviously brought into the conversation by Coates as something significant and very much on his mind.
Now that Trump[ has taken office and has announced his cabinet selections, and we’re in the process of selecting them, and he’s signing EO’s that are bringing mass protests, and everything else he is doing that assaulting our senses of what is normal and decent, the Climate Crisis is shoved even further from being front page news. This is probably the worst news of all, for me. And ALL of it is bad, and I went out to an anti-ban public protest in Nashville, and have been posting about it amongst all the other things. But , as Ta-Nehisis Coates said, “I’m just going to say it”. If we’re talking about the kind of reform that some of us would like to see, like this Climate Crisis, we ARE going to need “Something more”. Especially since it is not being covered by the mainstream media. We don’t even address this by thinking of it in the normal sense we think about when we say “long term”. It’s going to be “long term” in that we will never be free of this. It is going to be something required of humans from here on out, for the rest of our foreseeable existence. It is long term in that sense. But it is SHORT TERM in that we HAVE NO MORE TIME. We don’t have until 2018 to elect new people before we address this. We are going to have to fight as if our lives depended on it. We can be sure it is our descendants lives. And we can be sure that it is NOW affecting MANY LIVES around the world, and will only affect many, many more, coming home to roost quite ferociously. When will we wake up to this?