Gentle Protest

This morning, on Radio 4, in the programme called “Four Thought”, there was a segment by activist Sarah Corbett about the topic of gentle protest. Instead of marching with banners, or more extreme forms of aggressive protest, which often provoke as much opposition as sympathy, she explained the effectiveness of careful research and targeted but respectful “information” of influencers and decision-makers. She also spoke of how to get noticed, without being an irritation; in her case, she’s part of a movement that uses craft gifts to make impactful, insightful but gentle statements. I urge readers to listen, using the link above. There is much in this world that could be made more wholesome and her techniques are ones that we could all benefit from learning.

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What’s It All For?

At time, each of us surfaces from the hurly-burly of life – often at times of stress, when we just can’t seem to find a workable path – and we ask ourselves “Why do I keep trying? What’s it all for?” It may be that we’re trying to shift someone’s apparently immovable opinion – an opinion from which some very destructive actions will likely follow. For instance, when people we love, or creatures we care about, are in danger and we can’t seem to protect them. Or maybe we’ve already lost them and those who could have made a difference won’t change; won’t help to protect others in future. At times like these, we wonder why we – and countless others – struggle at all. Does the struggle have no value? After all, in just a few years time, geologically speaking, death will take us anyway.

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Environmental Cost

If asked, the majority of people now would say that they do not want to harm the planet for future generations. They may not always act in line with that desire – or not with the fervour that environmental activists wish – but that is because it is not yet their chief desire. The problem is that being environmentally friendly has a series of costs and we still lack – collectively – the will to face those costs.

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A Tough Choice

Just in the last few days, the UK has seen a growing spike in Covid-19 cases, showing that the virus is again spreading exponentially. This is, of course, just the visible outcome; it had probably been spreading more silently for around 2-3 weeks before it became visible. The ones most affected in this resurgence are young adults in their 20’s to 30’s. The spike and its nature were utterly predictable and it is certain that politicians understood that it would happen. The cause: holidays and pub outings, both of which were made available in order to drive up business revenues [and taxation]. It was a tough choice for the politicians and they must be hoping that the disease doesn’t move rapidly to attack the older relatives of those younger people. But there’s a potentially much bigger problem.

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I admit it … I am one of life’s watchers. There are those who dive right in and live in the moment. They dance on their emotions: sometimes “up” and at other times “down”. They thrive on social interaction. Then there are those who seek pleasure, which may be physical or may just be a feeling of safety. Their most treasured possession is trust. The difference is that the first enjoy pleasure but they take it as they find it. And then there are people like me, who watch – not emotional, but not lacking in feelings; not calculating or acquisitive, though well aware of opportunity; not seeking attention, since we have enough of our own. There are other types, of course, and many people slide between types, as different traits arise in them. But for each of these major types, there is also a dark side.

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