Photo by munshots on Unsplash
The facade is crumbling.
The uprisings against police brutality in American cities across the country are being violently repressed with eerie, vicious similarity. Unemployment is at 25%, the highest level since the Great Depression. Our national politics is in shambles. The broken systems of our decadent civilization require more and more energy to maintain, even as fewer and fewer people are served by them.
Amid all the chaos of our present breakdown, climate science serves as an irrefutable rebuttal to the “take it slow” mentality—the “be patient” mentality—the “change the system from within” mentality. This is the same reformist attitude that’s been thrust on over-policed Black communities across America for decades, and it has only resulted in hiking police budgets.
In some ways this approach was always a lie, an attempt to shield from us our true collective power. In politics as in spiritual traditions, the present moment is richest in its potential for transformation.
But now more than ever, our redemption will come in the immediate term—or not at all. The future of humanity depends on what we do during the next few years. Everything about how we relate to each other, our selves, the land—everything must change. We must abandon our willingness to exploit, and our willingness to be exploited—with equal fervor.
What we do in 30 years will not matter. It is what we do now that matters. We struggle at the brink of a precipice. Climate breakdown will vastly accelerate societal breakdown, and at that point the possibility of upholding the dignity of human life will be sickeningly diminished. The decay we are seeing now in the bones of the U.S. empire is just a fraction of the cascading forces that will rip through American society in the climate-changing future.
My deepest respect and admiration for all those honoring the dignity of the life of George Floyd and so many countless others by putting their bodies on the line. You are proof that this system will attempt to shore itself up with violence when its legitimacy is shot. Don’t let anyone say that your demands to, for example, abolish police are unrealistic. Justice delayed is justice denied—never in history has this rung so true as it does in 2020.
Black lives matter.