This is a rant.

This is a rant. Trying to research and talk about climate change is the most frustrating thing I have ever done and sometimes I read too many news articles. But it is starting to feel personal. The attacks of litter, exhaust, trawling ships, spewing factories, buildings that stamp out acres of soil and trees. What if I went into a church and threw garbage everywhere while coughing in everyone’s face and destroying the alter? This is how it feels. Every day.

It does not need to be this way.  We need a new paradigm. We need to look at local change from a global perspective. Big business needs to take a hike and find some ethics and we need to stop supporting them until they do. We need creative and innovative solutions to find a balance between our lives and the environments they reside in. We need to stop mindlessly consuming and start thinking through our actions.

Planning and design theory and practice are so often reactive, but for this to work it will need to be proactive. Green roofs, energy generation, community gardens, and the preservation of natural areas are good places to start. But that is all it is… A start. Interventions will need to be small, intricate, and widespread to continue this slow process of adaptation. We need to work on connecting these localized projects to the greater whole.

I will close with Wendell Berry.

Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front

Love the quick profit, the annual raise,
vacation with pay. Want more
of everything ready-made. Be afraid
to know your neighbors and to die.
And you will have a window in your head.
Not even your future will be a mystery
any more. Your mind will be punched in a card
and shut away in a little drawer.
When they want you to buy something
they will call you. When they want you
to die for profit they will let you know.

So, friends, every day do something
that won’t compute. Love the Lord.
Love the world. Work for nothing.
Take all that you have and be poor.
Love someone who does not deserve it.
Denounce the government and embrace
the flag. Hope to live in that free
republic for which it stands.
Give your approval to all you cannot
understand. Praise ignorance, for what man
has not encountered he has not destroyed.

Ask the questions that have no answers.
Invest in the millennium. Plant sequoias.
Say that your main crop is the forest
that you did not plant,
that you will not live to harvest.
Say that the leaves are harvested
when they have rotted into the mold.
Call that profit. Prophesy such returns.

Put your faith in the two inches of humus
that will build under the trees
every thousand years.
Listen to carrion – put your ear
close, and hear the faint chattering
of the songs that are to come.
Expect the end of the world. Laugh.
Laughter is immeasurable. Be joyful
though you have considered all the facts.
So long as women do not go cheap
for power, please women more than men.
Ask yourself: Will this satisfy
a woman satisfied to bear a child?
Will this disturb the sleep
of a woman near to giving birth?

Go with your love to the fields.
Lie down in the shade. Rest your head
in her lap. Swear allegiance
to what is nighest your thoughts.
As soon as the generals and the politicos
can predict the motions of your mind,
lose it. Leave it as a sign
to mark the false trail, the way
you didn’t go. Be like the fox
who makes more tracks than necessary,
some in the wrong direction.
Practice resurrection.

Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front” from The Country of Marriage, copyright © 1973 by Wendell Berry.

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