Down to the Crossroads

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Throughout the history of mankind, there have been many, many turning points, many times we have stood at the crossroads and decided where to go. In fact you could say what we read in our history books is a written record of those crossroads, or at least the record of the results of the decisions made there.

The two that leapt into my mind this morning were the election of Lincoln and Roosevelt, the right men at the right time….with no CLEAR indication of their greatness before they were elected. Where would we and the world be now if different men, lesser men, had been in their place?

And no this is not JUST about Al Gore!

Al is certainly a symbol. And, yikes, Al vs Hil or Rudy sure is as well.

But it is much deeper than that, just as with Lincoln or Roosevelt, it was not JUST about the man….but about the events that transpired while they were in power, and the choices that were made by others in their time. And about the issues that were decided then.

And to coin a phrase….man, do we have issues!

Fundamental ones.

Issues of character, issues that go directly to who we are and who we will become. Issues that are our tests, that determine who we actually are, behind the rhetoric. We have decisions to make in this time that will have MONUMENTAL impacts on the future. Right Here, Right Now.

Decisions on who and what we are. Starting with… are we an Imperial nation that wages aggressive wars and tortures? Are we a society that feels the need to spy on every potential ‘terrorist,’ in a time when disagreeing with the President gets you on a terrorist watch list? Is it the governments job to protect itself from its citizens? Is our Executive Branch above the law and without accountability to its citizens? Will we become freer, or less free? Is America a democracy or not?

Do we as Americans….do we as HUMANS let genocide occur, do we let 20,00 children a day starve to death, do we allow the brutality of Burma pass without action, do we allow the slave trade to continue to exist…..and do we continue to destroy our nest, our habitat, our children’s and grand children’s homes, the only ones they have? Will we as a species allow  short term greed and profit destroy our future?

Like it or not, acknowledge it or not…we are a planet now, rapidly closing in on seven billion people. (2 billion of them under 21!) We do not have the luxury of pretending we are not. A big part of choosing where we go from this crossroads depends on whether we, America start thinking as global citizens, or continue to believe we are a tiny island of 300 million people in a sea of seven billion.

We can choose to continue to compete against the other six and a half billion people, or choose to cooperate with….us….and build a sane world.

It will take the entire planet working together to defeat Climate Crisis. As is always the case, there is opportunity in this danger. Fate, history, evolution or God…whatever you call ‘it,’ is calling on us to learn and grow. ‘It’ has handed us a challenge on nearly every issue and every possible level, how we react to that challenge determines which direction we take at the crossroads…..determines who we are. And who our children and grandchildren and the next seven generations will be.

‘It’ is calling on us to decide.

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  1. Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

    We here have all decided.

    File this under ‘yelling’

    • pfiore8 on October 18, 2007 at 6:40 pm

    intellectual consensus builders and resource sharers or the big hulking territorial dick swingers

    it’s just the way my mind translates these things…

    the problems will come with resource sharing and people screaming communism or socialism… they don’t get the concept of equitable justice… and it’s not two cars in every garage… but it does mean the ability to feed your kids and potable water

    it also means a willingness to live leaner across the board

    we are just beginning to understand the weight of stuff, of owning stuff, and how it indentures us

    should be an interesting coupla hundred years coming up

  2. square street corner every Sunday for our weekly peace vigil/anti-war protest.

    A lot of folks are supportive (maybe 50-60% – in middle Tennessee), and only 5% or so are hostile.  But the others are driving by in their big SUV’s and they keep their faces averted  so they don’t have to see us or our messages.

    We’ve got to become, as a society, feeling less entitled do our gas guzzling lifestyles.

  3. There is a new movement that is sweeping the restaurant industry, the concept is that all food is grown or raised within 100 miles of the restaurant.

    People are taking this idea home with them and are doing their shopping in the same manner.  This simple change has many long term impacts, reducing the need for transportation over many miles for produce, revitalizing local farms, an increase in small specialty businesses that focus on organic, sustainable practices etc.

    Reducing trips to town, re-using boxes and bags, combining errands with a friendly neighbor, using high-efficiency appliances, cleaning out your furnace, caulking and sealing, it all helps and each step takes very little effort.

    • fatdave on October 18, 2007 at 7:52 pm

    in a flat valley bottom. Looking outward from the Chiltern Hills it is flat pretty much as far as the eye can see. Even with a dodgy leg I can ride my bicycle over the Chilterns, they’re hardly the Himalayas.

    This place is crawling with SUVs. Before school starts it is impossible to get through the road it’s on because of the damned SUVs – mostly delivering a single child to the school. They fit the bloody things with ‘Roo bars to ensure that anybody hit by one , even at low speeds, stands a better than average chance of dying of any injuries they receive.

    So, child dropped off, they go a couple of hundred yards to the store and a further couple of hundred yards home, where they wave to the neighbour who is parking their own SUV after dropping off the kid at the same school.

    I envy the US it’s yellow school buses. They would make such a big deifference here – where there’s no need for an SUV unless you’re a farmer or a recovery mechanic. Legislate against these buggers.

  4. We just returned from a vac in the Pacific Northwest, it pains me to think it could all be gone, mowed under to be replaced by condos and suburbs even more it already has. I don’t even want to live in a world in which sustainable lifestyles are not considered sane and sensible. As I took pictures, I kept wondering if things like national parks would be redundant in my lifetime.

  5. we as humans face, is becoming harder and harder to ignore, the consequence of our path is being manifested in the physical. Those who choose to pursue the fantasy called the American Dream, are faced with chickens coming home to roost, large giant chickens that turn their amoral selfish entitlements into nightmares.

    Do they sense that their life style is unsustainable and that even if they insert their heads in the sand, and insist that they are the blessed, the game is rigged and no one wins? Can they see that greed is not only immoral but bad economics?

    Our culture and history are ingrained with the concepts of individualism, manifest destiny, and competition. Maybe these former leaders who took the right road were simply an embodiment of the will of the people, who saw the perils of allowing unmitigated greed to destroy everything in it’s path. 

  6. if it’s a boy.  No reason other than she likes the name.  My family has always been one big freudian slip and I think the next generation has slipped down that slippery slope with the rest of us now.  She hasn’t decided on a girl’s name yet….anybody have any names of women who triumphed over global tragedy?  I can tell them to her and see if one of those just happens to a perfect girl’s name 🙂

    • Temmoku on October 19, 2007 at 12:46 am

    had been elected rather than Lincoln or Roosevelt…we have that now!
    It is all about power, control and money. If people rely on distant places for their staples, they can be easily controlled…If a nation destroys another nation’s infrastructure, then that nation is totally dependent enabling the first country to secure a large, compliant market. Well, maybe the market is not so compliant yet, but, perhaps if an unelected president attacks another nation, one that might be inhibiting the compliancy of another…..?  Who knows what riches….?
    Good food for thought Buhdy….I am not sure I wanted to think about this.

    • xaxado on October 19, 2007 at 5:55 am

    The crossroads image: Tom Hanks as the survivor, emaciated but released from illusion; following the north fork, toward a butterfly, with Canada the rising star.

    We have a common enemy now: aliens.  The aliens are among us: artificial persons — corporations.  They live by our thirsts.  They feed on our agonies.

    We must ‘disenthrall’ ourselves, said Lincoln.  ‘Thralls’ were slaves taken by Vikings from lands that they raided, the key exchange asset in their economy.  Slavery has always been a profit center.

    The legal argument is that the 14th Amendment, the anti-slavery amendment, brought corporate personhood into being.  But the 14th amendment, on careful reading, does not prohibit slavery.  And so two wrongs make a catastrophe. 

    We are as castaways, unknown, unloved, and unnourished, in a place no longer humane, a nightmare place of giant monsters.

    Make fire.

  7. A tautology:

    If evolution is the evolution of consciousness; ergo, the direction of  evolution must be consciously chosen.

    Perhaps we have gone from the millenia of blind, unconscious, robotic programming to that point of consciously chosing the programming into the future.

    It certainly seems to me that the folks on/at this site understand this…

    …the emphasis on compassion and empathy, on sharing and caring, on the we, on the wholeness…

    I believe this is the 2nd half of the equation. 

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