Saturday, January 28, 2006

Is What We're Losing Worth It?

Lets all hop in the wayback machine and return to an early post I did Once Upon A Time There Was A Land Called Florida The Florida I knew as a kid is gone and with it a lot of what people came to Florida to enjoy. Oh, yeah, the beaches are still there to but much more crowded. The water too, but much more polluted. The suns rays are now more likely to cause mysterious little things on the skin. And the quality of life is no longer what it used to be. It is for these reasons my wife and I chose the Groundhog Mountain solitude over the urban Suncoast society.

I found the following over at Fred First's Fragments From Floyd , another fellow who escaped the city for the wonder of these mountains. Fred, who has a strong scientific background, is very concerned about environmental issues. Besides being a First (pun intended) rate journalist Fred is an excellent photographer.

I suggest reading the whole article as it is extremely well written and will send a shiver down the back of anyone who values nature more than asphalt.

My generation is weighed down by a sadness we do not know we feel. The promise was whispered melodiously in our ears sometime after the enjoyment of the great treasures beneath the TV dinner's foil and before the deep velvet of sleep in our soft, footed pajamas. The delivery, we have discovered by now, is not as we were pledged. The disparity is so geologic that we risk our necks attempting to view the whole towering thing. The velocity of change has picked up a bit: no longer can we disregard it as some crumbling old history. What is lost was here just thirty or forty years ago, and thus it is written all over the pages of your life. But still you don't know what can be done. Each announcement comes wrapped in its own fait accompli: this going, this coming, look out, look away, cry alone, it's done. The golf course, the road, the stores, the cutting, drilling, stripping. Your village in England sitting next to the planned town that grows ever upward, ever out. Your center city losing another century house and gaining one more superfluous drugstore behind its Indian Ocean of parking lot. Those old farms bearing new billboards of what's to come: forty huge houses of Frankensteinian architecture unmoored from any landscape to float just above its treelessness. Your ancient mountaintop a resort and vacation homes. That Beaux Arts post office a Popeyes Chicken and Biscuits. This revered battlefield fertilized with men's blood a shopping center. The dirt road paved. The paved road once two lanes, now four; once four, now six. The crossroads with no light gets its signal. The march of time keeps marching, the army bigger every day.

Our numbers keep growing and people must live somewhere and have roads to get them to and fro. Places to shop are necessary and what would we ever do without the fast food culture. Where and when, if ever, will it stop? Progress is, of course, necessary but at what cost? Will proactive ever replace reactive with the planners trumphing the developers?

It's happening in the mountains already. A farmer told me only yesterday of the constant stream of developers knocking at his door wanting to buy land to "develop". He values his heritage, home and 200 plus acres more than the money offered. He also said it's very hard for the small farmer to get by what with things like a no frills tractor going for over sixty thousand. Maybe if more people would just suck it in, instead of caving in to the big bucks, there's an off chance the earth and nature some of us regard as more than a parking lot for the big box store may, just may survive.


Blogger mreddie said...

It makes a person just want to say - stop the merry-go-round, I want to get off! Even though our area is not building quite as rapidly as the coast or mountains, it just keeps going.

I retired from BellSouth in '02 and in the almost 38 years I worked with them in this area, there has been constant growth.

But I have found when the hopelessness that is our world starts to creep into my peace, that's when I have to hand any worries I might have back to God and just acknowledge that He is still in control, and He hands back the peace that calms my world.

Sorry to get a little wordy there - God is good! ec

4:07 PM  
Blogger The MacBean Gene said...

He sure is. I keep handing Him my problems and He takes care of them.
Sure am glad I ran across your blog m. Thanks for the comment.

7:13 PM  
Blogger Bonita said...

Both you and mreddie have an important theme going today...his is on gardening tools, and yours is on the garden, or worry over the garden. Over in Montana I remember the farmers agonizing over a stretch of land that was going to be paved over for a super highway up to Glacier Park. The soil was the best, loamy, soil in the valley. They actually came with trucks, and hauled some of it away to save it. What dedication...we have to be like that to understand and save our world.

7:58 PM  
Blogger The MacBean Gene said...

It's not easy, Bonita. There are so many pressing problems all intertwined with what seems to be a new corporate totalitarianism (not my term). mreddie offers the best advice, turn it over to God.

8:19 PM  

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