I think my students are rubbing off on me; this is the first time in my adult life that I procrastinated on a project… It wasn’t because I didn’t want to write or that I was too busy. It was because I had too many things to write about, and I couldn’t make a decision. I attended a meeting yesterday, and after reflecting on the meeting (and life in general), I decided on the following hodgepodge.
Someone said, “He that always gives way to others will end up having no principles of his own.” In the meeting there were two people who were dichotomously opposed on an argument of principle, while the others were in varying stages of indifference, though all understood the argument and the ramifications. After reflecting, I decided that we were just two jellyfish who couldn’t agree.
William Douglas said, “The right to be let alone is indeed the beginning of all freedoms.” I really wanted to write about the free speech debate again, but that hot potato may be getting too hot to touch, so I won’t put any opinion in writing again. It is a serious threat to our democracy, but it is not the most serious threat to civilization.
President Obama said, “Mr. President, Mr. Secretary General, fellow leaders: For all the immediate challenges that we gather to address this week—terrorism, instability, inequality, disease—there’s one issue that will define the contours of this century more dramatically than any other, and that is the urgent and growing threat of a changing climate.” Climate change is an issue of importance, but not the most important. Although empathy is not my strong suit, I feel for those in Texas after going through a flood in 2012. It is said, “There are no atheists in foxholes.” I would add, “or floods.”
Albert Einstein said, “I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones.” I don’t often disagree with Einstein, but I do here. He was too optimistic. Many of our oligarchs spend money influencing their social change – most recently changing education. The Oracle of Omaha, however, has decided to spend his fortune trying to prove Einstein wrong.
In casual conversation, my friend mentioned that she was meeting with her investment broker about increasing her contributions to her retirement account. I’m not sure if it is indifference or optimism that guides us to these types of decisions, but I hope it is prophetic.