Four Things I Find Comforting
Posted by Jonathan Parfrey on December 14, 2016
In light of Trump’s proposed appointees and the awful rhetoric, here are four things I find greatly comforting.
- Pro-environment convictions are shared by a wide majority of Americans. Environmental responsibility, pluralism, and social justice are not just values — they’re what works. In a recent poll, only 13% of American voters indicated that the U.S. should withdraw from the Paris accord. In this light, we shouldn’t feel marginalized. On the contrary, I see us as the carriers of civilization’s flame and should proudly embrace the mantle.
- LA is good and getting better. Los Angeles has a long way to go, absolutely, but the region is nonetheless moving in a good direction. In last month’s election, LA voters approved smart measures on parks, transportation, housing, and homelessness. Best of all, Los Angeles celebrates diversity — unlike other parts of the nation. We’re pluralistic and proud. I love that about us.
- Great stories feed us. I find comfort in the Seder meal and the story of liberation. I’m inspired by Gandhi’s life and the nonviolent struggle for India. I’m fired-up when I hear stories of the civil rights movement, environmental movement, labor movement, women’s movement, and others. And I gain strength from my family’s stories: my great-grandparents fled persecution and found a new life in America. My father survived a Nazi prison camp. We all have these stories.
- We know how to fight. Climate Resolve knows how to organize. Our local and statewide efforts to enact climate solutions are winning. Our work has influenced national and global policies. And, looking ahead, we’re equipped to respond to retrograde actions coming out of Washington.
Let’s persevere, not panic. Trump’s margin of victory in Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin was less than 78,000 votes. (That’s fewer people than live in East Hollywood.) More than 136 million Americans voted and Clinton won the popular vote by 2.7 million votes. So the fundamentals are good. A pluralistic pro-environment approach is the right approach.
With your help, Climate Resolve will continue to protect our skies and do so in a way that also improves the quality of life for all Americans.
Last idea — by tangibly engaging, we can become an actor in history rather than its victim. It’s also a form of therapy. Once you act, you’ll feel better. I promise. So enough hand-wringing. Let’s get busy.