Thank you, Dana! This is an important piece and one I can echo, having grown up in Pennsylvania, too. I remember the old steel and quarry days, and now, living in Northern Indiana, I witness similar concerns playing out here with all the industry. The entire Rust Belt has been devastated by decades of policy, so while it’s easy for conscious, Earth loving urbanites to look down their noses in disgust and disbelief at what goes on in the flyover states and rural areas, when you talk with people and live there, you begin to understand how such things could happen. It doesn’t make it easier or better to live there, but understanding how these areas became how they are now helps to create paths forward.
I appreciate the discussion that “If we want to solve these issues, we have to address the roots of them, and those roots are economic, historical, and physical.” Here’s to regenerating landscapes, creating new economies, and giving people more harmonious ways of reclaiming self respect!
As I write this, threats to our lands, our environment, our oceans, and all life on earth seem greater than ever before. As I write this, water protectors in North Dakota are getting beaten, arrested, tear gassed and jailed. As I write this, many folks are having difficulty understanding the decisions of so many Americans, decisions that potentially threaten our lands. As I write this, community after community find themselves in a place of needing to take a stand to those with more power and resources to defend their rights to clean water, personal safety, and a clean environment. But in many other places, people have different views–they have welcomed fracking and other energy extraction into their communities, they welcome logging and other industries, and welcome various kinds of extraction of resources. It seems hard for those who are in an earth-centered and earth-honoring viewpoint to understand what would possess…
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