All Things Considered today gave the usual calm treatment the remarkably incongruous claim by news anchor Glen Beck to the mantle of Dr. Martin Luther King this weekend. An minister who had attended the “ecumenical” political gathering pointed to how the number of children born without married parents had gone up dramatically since the 1960’s, as indicating the nation taking a “wrong turn” then, and what a new religious revolution was needed to heal.
I don’t take Mr. Beck any more seriously than I take a drunk with a loaded gun… but the point he makes that something is wrong if most children are born without married parents, and implicitly not being taught successful ways of living, seems quite valid.
If we are looking at the great turning points that coincided with the 60’s, as showing a nation taking a wrong turn, shouldn’t we be “ecumenical” about it. How about considering the way the nation quite ignored the main messages OF the 60’s. For one we let our economic religion take over, completely ignoring that the rigid physical limits of the earth had already started getting in our way, despite quite loud protest.
Why not acknowledge the great harm being done by economic institutions that treat everything on earth that is either out of sight or not tied down as being as exploitable and disposable. That is now quite visibly and actively causing the physical world we rely on to be slipping from our grasp.
The earth is a sacred trust. Our spiritual failure to acknowledge the need to stop consuming it ever faster, which “growth” unavoidably directly means, devalues every human institution that tolerates it.
To end the growing impacts of our consuming the earth we’d have to end our growing investments in doing that, whether it is seen as the mainstay of our crazy economic scheme for the crazy, or not. Yes, discussing it is also a taboo, though, so maybe we shouldn’t talk about it.
Maybe it’s better we just leave it unsaid… ignore it knowing it’ll just go away anyway sometime and so there’s no real reason to bother.