Thursday, August 08, 2013

Drugs, Heroes and Blindness

A promising young man recently committed suicide up here. According to town rumor, it's because the army decided he was "overweight" and he'd "disappointed his uncle." These are only rumors. 

I saw this kid at graduation. If the rumor is true, it's a lie. Supposedly, the army yanked away his future, and he shot himself. Again, the family is torn to pieces, and not sharing exact information - but it's all over town, through one rumor or another. 

A grandmother up here was furious about recruiters at the high-school job days. The army acts like one of those bad religious groups, looking for the suffering and dead-end to lie to and suck into the machine. I'm explaining "pension rank" to everybody - the fact that, in order to guarantee s/he'll retire as a general and not a colonel, a general really needs a war. And recruiters have quotas, and will commit suicide themselves, if they can't meet them.

While delivering food-bank food to a dying man, I saw a group of kids clustered near his door, in the parking lot. They were discussing something that had upset them. They were also waiting for their drug dealer (from the looks of them, probably the locally-produced meth). 

These kids, waiting for a pain-killer, were hurt by the death of a school hero. 

Hoquim recently put together a block watch. What are they most concerned with, about kids? Cleaning off graffiti. Not why the kids are suffering and hunting paint, alcohol and meth. Not why they're in pain and need help. They have pretty new uniforms, but where is the outreach to the suffering, and the kids already on the streets? These kids all know each other, regardless of how they try to cut them up into us vs. them. The "us" and "them" is actually by generation - and the "us" isn't doing a very good job helping "them."

The old guard up here is disgusting. Loggers are clear-cutting in a wildlife/wetland area right next to the dead boy's town. They hit their jake-brakes when going by campgrounds in the Olympic National Park. The people from the 1950's are gleeful that trees are going down. All they can see is a football game - not just cash, but the domination of the Enemy, Nature. And guess who they call "eco-terrorists?"

Wildlife and trees and tourism, that can offer so many working positions - not just jobs - for all the kids for the future. These people raise money for scholarships for kids, but how will those kids get to stay here if there's nothing?

The Clallam Bay Comicon may have to be witness to what the old guard does to the community. The place may be wrecked for our generation - but the only thing that really stopped wholesale whaling and overfishing of cod were the collapses of populations. So maybe the west end needs to die before it can live. 

But why do we always have to go through a resurrection?

We need to reach out to all the kids, because all the kids know each other. And they're asking what we're doing with their planet, and why we're only leaving them scraps and mud. That look in a sad kid's eyes? That's blame - and helplessness.

Or is it? A kid up here is going to be building an anti-bullying website. Whenever we go hiking or to the beach, there's very little litter, and since kids are the ones who run farthest, they're the ones keeping it clean. Kids who love nature and know it's the future are stewarding now. They're cleaning up water and woods. They want modern logging techniques, not just ones that pay for the machinery, in a cut pay cut pay vicious circle. Fewer and fewer people are fishing except for food. The old paradigm of animals as toys and something to play with, for trophies (training for war) or catch and release (tormenting animals for the fun of it) is beginning to fade. The horrible 20th-century myth that only humans can feel and hurt is being hunted down and dispatched for what it was and is - an industrial excuse for treating our fellow peoples on this planet as so many tools and cash bags.

The old guard calls people like us "wimps." This is another word for "meek." Only the green will survive - and who do you think will inherit the earth?

(And why am I bothering to write this? Because it's the only weapon I have against the spoilers. And so nobody can accuse me of not trying, and for turning a blind eye. I don't want to be the one to stumble in surprise on the tattered remnants, and claim I never knew. And the more I can spread this, the less able others will ever be able to say, "But we didn't know!" I don't want to have to say, "I told you so!" again - but I'll probably have to. I really hate looking this prescient, every single time, when past lessons should have taught us better. And we're still testing animals to see if THEY can learn? What was the definition of insanity, again?)

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