28th September 2020

My news and social feed is filled with the ramblings and prognostications of environmental warriors who superficially seem to walk the walk and talk the talk, but pose the question in my  admittedly often quizzical mind whether they believe wholeheartedly in the truths they espouse or are honest in their motivations for the seeming endless need for discussion, meetings, enquiries, research, prognostication and answers.

Pain and misfortune are in my experience inclined to motivate the most pronounced and ardent prophet to recant unless their beliefs are deep and indisputable in mind and heart. Too often these impassioned eco-anarchists are found to be not only the font of all wisdom but the recipients of the often-accompanying rewards, societal, physical, and financial such seeming altruistic manifestos are inclined to create.

At age twenty something I recall having a host of ideas to improve the planet, decrease urban chaos, renew the stridency of natural flora and fauna. I am certain I spent a great deal of time in cafes and bars discussing such notions with likeminded individuals, criticizing my antecedents for their seeming ignorance or blind inactivity,  preparing a well-considered and politically positive program to bring our planet back to its rightful condition for myself, my friends, the population presently living and those destined to manifest in the future. Of course such plans were as much pie in the sky as were my wishes for universal suffrage, an end to conflict, acceptance of basic rights for all under the law and more importantly in society at all levels.

Quite naturally, sometime later, once  passions have deflated and afterglow exists in but fond memory, when the high of caffeine or the buzz and slightly skewed influence of alcohol have evaporated as are sure to do, the reality of providing the plainly needed necessities for the continued upward momentum of genus homo sapiens appears rather uncomfortably back on the front cortex of the brain.

My personal belief has settled to a rather insipid kind of semi-activism, that I do what I can when I can, that a melee is far more desirable and winnable than a battle, that standing still is not defeat, showing patience is in no way a retreat.

Baby steps are now and always have been the way forward, small changes in consideration that will cumulatively produce huge shifts in inclination, but assuredly avoiding any motivation for personal gain, financial, in influence or dominion. Such advantage would change the well-meaning and honest activist to nothing more than another politician tying their coat tails to the very ideal they purport to consider above all else.

Patience is most decidedly a virtue, although the attempted abatement of the guillotine blade once it had begun its gravity fed passage down the grooved superstructure is patently absurd. Something decidedly needs to be done, effectively, just with gentle understanding, a difficult but not insoluble paradox. Positive, implacable persuasion probably answers the call, defining progress whilst avoiding the undue pressure guaranteed to scare the natives, curdle the cream, sour the wine. The eco-warrior is perhaps more successfully employed in subtle conversion rather than revolution.

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