Enough.

Motel sink, 48 hours after the fire.

Let’s go up a level. Let’s think about humans. Soon, humans will no longer be able to survive on this planet. [1]

So much work to be done, trying to avert the end! Jobs that can support our lives, adventures to nourish them. [2]

Your own adventure could include applying science and technology, or finding new ways of working together that will allow — maybe — some healing and safety, or documenting and sharing news of all of these. [3]

My manifesto has three parts.

There is ENOUGH.

If we humans organized our resources differently, there would be water and food and shelter for all of us. [4]

We have endured ENOUGH.

From systematic oppression to violence and looting and careless waste, each of us has our own grave concerns. [5] Imagine your own, right now: those are the ones I am referring to.

We are ENOUGH.

The path forward? Let’s each forgive ourselves for our past mistakes, and take some kind of action, to connect, to build, to heal. Study what happens. Learn. Try again.

To enable some humans to — perhaps — survive. [6]

We humans are all connected. We can embrace this, or die.

Notes

These are optional! And long-winded.

[0] I write from a place of deep gratitude.

To illustrate gratitude, my own picture, taken after our apartment building burned. All people and animals got out safely. Here in the motel bathroom (paid for by renters’ insurance) are Red Cross emergency toiletries, representing all the ways humans can support each other, and Don Moyer’s “Things Could Be Worse” mug, representing Art For Tough Times.

[1] Of course, for humans to have a chance, other living things, beginning with unicellular organisms on up, will need to survive also. All the others are doing their best to survive, and we need to start doing ours.

If any other species comes after us, they will not call us homo sapiens. I am not the first to say that I have high hopes for the dolphins, if they can adapt to the acid seas.

[2] How many of us nourish ourselves on stories about someone “saving the day” or “saving the world”? Each of us can be that person in reality.

Are stories of zombies popular right now because of our deepest fears, that we are zombies, shambling mindlessly to our own destruction?

[3] Some starting points can be found in Moving Forward. Each of us can find plenty to do right where we live.

[4] Admittedly this was more true in the recent past. Now extreme weather is raising new challenges, so it will take a combination of organizing differently and resetting our personal expectations (minimalism plus) to make this happen. Learning to eat jellyfish, as just one example.

[5] As a patriotic US taxpayer since 1973, I have mourned (and sometimes protested) when we misused our military personnel and political power, while supporting humans in the armed forces and all branches of public service.

Now our resources are being wasted, looted, and plundered in every branch of government.

We “white” USians failed to change the fundamental and systematic racism of our society, so our fears were there to be weaponized against the careful balanced structures that were intended to constitute “America”. My rant Unflinching is about this challenge, and how I am trying to respond to it. The epigraph is from James Baldwin: “You need someone who believes in this country, again, to begin to change it.”

Intersectional hatred and violence can only be fought intersectionally.

We humans are all connected.

Let’s discuss people who say we are not all connected. I’ll try to avoid exchanging words in public spaces with people who preach and practice separation, shunning, hatred, murder. Acknowledging their human-ness, within a quarantine appropriate for their words and/or deeds. Because they are interfering with species survival, trying to keep us from getting on with the job(s).

Update: For readers who queried my “not engaging” policy, I have added in public spaces to the paragraph above. I respect those who engage in one-on-one dialogue, especially with questions that draw out the human values and needs that bridge divides. And I urge them to learn to recognize energy-draining sealioning. And if I were to run for office (again) I’d have to change this policy. [Life is complicated. That’s why we have footnotes.]

[6] See [3] re Moving Forward, ibid.

Whatever your favorite artistic achievement may be … an Aztec temple or Family Ties or Fibonacci numbers … when humans become extinct, no one will ever enjoy it again. “Nelson’s column had gone, and there would be no outcry.” “The meat is the whole deal!

Part 2: Unflinching. Part 3: Moving Forward. Thank you for reading!

Jules (Julianne) Chatelain

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Flat flip flies straight. Tilted flip curves. Play catch; invent games!

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