Maintaining the good life comes at a steep cost
From “keeping up with the Joneses” to “shop 'til you drop,” American retail consumption has made a meteoric climb. Shopping has become the national pastime; Black Friday and Cyber Monday have become virtual holidays; and spending money is regarded as a patriotic act.
This is a pretty good deal. Things are pretty cheap, you can have delivery in a day if you like, and you can charge it for payment sometime in the future. The one sacrifice you might have to make is not to let your spending get out of control, and you should get in the habit of thanking our military for their sacrifice in protecting our lifestyle. You can feel good about yourself with both of these actions.
However, to continue this influx of material goods, we have to abandon any moral constraints to our actions and acquiesce in the assault on the natural world. American commerce exploits the resources and labor of lesser developed countries, our foreign policy supports and arms oppressive regimes, our military invades other countries when it perceives a threat and, if there is retaliation, we regard it as subversion or terrorism and respond with no-holds-barred force. We decapitate mountains; dig in the Arctic; drill in the ocean; fracture the earth's crust; clear-cut forests; bury our garbage under hillocks of dirt; and dump our waste in the ocean, rivers and the atmosphere.
Of course this consideration is only academic. There's no way we will relinquish our grip on the good life, and if we should be accused of any wrongdoing I'm certain we will be able to justify our behavior.
The rainbow of justice
On New Year's Eve, as I shopped at my neighborhood Kroger, someone stole a magnetic bumper sticker from the back of my car. It stated simply, “A Just World for All” with the logo and name of the United Church of Christ in small print. All on a rainbow background.
Did they have a problem with a just world for all? With the United Church of Christ? With rainbows? No, I bet they loved it so much they took it for their own car.
Anyway, I just took the duplicate that we'd stuck to the fridge in our garage and put it on my car in place of the stolen one. As the saying goes, “The arc of justice is long, but it will always bend to adorn the back of my Honda.”
I suspect the arc of justice will also find my anonymous thief who loves rainbows.
Robert B. Pettit
Stance has consequences
In the United States, the percentages are about 40% pro-choice and 40% pro-life. The Allen County commissioners with their pro-life resolution have effectively told 40% of potential employers looking to relocate here that maybe this isn't an environment they would choose to move to.
A smile to end the year
Hats off to Gregg Bender for the lighthearted cartoon posted for the year in review. How can you not smile at Promenade Park and our riverside development? More good things to come.