There is a wonderful interview, by David Marchese, with Frances Moore Lappé in the The New York Times that is informative, thought-provoking and shares with us just the kind of attitude that we need to make the (human) world a better and more livable place. Her work is part of what prompted me to become vegetarian decades ago and her ideas of effective political action on the individual level inspire me. Rock on, Citizen Moore Lappé!
“Participating in democracy is the essence of a good life.”
⇒ Makes me wanna holler!
There have been so many good (and disturbing) articles about climate change in the last few days that I am going to list a few, even though Hapless Press is really about (my) art and what inspires it. There’s so much information out there that it can be overwhelming; here are a few pieces I got something out of:
Some answers from The Washington Post concerning the debate about how much hamburgers affect the environment. By Sarah Kaplan
This New York Times story follows some of the plastic we “recycle” to an area of Indonesia where it is burned to fuel the making of tofu. This is a profoundly disturbing account of the cost of our convenience. By
This NYTimes article features an interactive map that will show you the level of vehicle emissions, from cars and freight, in metro areas across the US…it’s stunning. Not in a good way. For example, Oklahoma City emissions have risen 57% since 1990. Not good. By Nadja Popovich and
As Hapless Press demonstrates, I’m a fan of mass transit and this NYTimes article looks at some of the ways cities are trying to cut down on auto emissions, which account for almost a quarter of all green house gases (according to the article…). By Somini Sengupta and
This is pretty dispiriting–another article, this one from Mother Jones Magazine, about some of the true costs of our convenience. According to this article, 91% of plastics are never recycled. We try and we mean well, but it’s not working. Clearly, we have to change our behaviors. By Emily Holden and Oliver Milman
⇒But look! There’s progress! We can change things for the better:
I often listen to podcasts while doing rote or simple tasks and this morning, while carving on a linoleum block, I listened to one of my favorites, CounterSpin from Fairness and Accountability in Reporting, or FAIR, @ https://fair.org/counterspin-radio/. The program interviews a lot of sources that do not commonly get approached by corporate media reporters and talks about how corporate media often under- or mis- represent very important issues, policy or cultural trends to the detriment of citizens. The show I listened to today was an interview with Amin Husain, an organizer with the cultural activism group Decolonize This Place. The show’s host and interviewer, Janine Jackson, asks us to consider, “Cultural institutions are important sites of public conversation, but the public doesn’t have much say in who gets to lead that conversation, or the stories they tell. Activists are asking us to talk about what that means, and what it would mean to change it.” Her interview with Amin Husain discusses a lot of good points about colonization, ethnocentrism, wealth and equality. And it poses really important questions about the value of art, as culture, as manifest spirituality and as something that we assign monetary worth. It’s a really good listen, even if you’re not particularly interested in art and museums.
→10/13/19 Here’s another interesting radio show about the role of museums in history and art: Fred Wilson Uses the Museum as His Palette on PRI.org
From the interview page: A New York-born conceptual artist and MacArthur “genius” grant recipient, Wilson has spent a lot of his career examining the way art and artifacts are chosen and exhibited. He wants everybody — the curators and the visitors — to reconsider how and why artwork makes its way into museums.
As noted earlier on this blog, I am interested in transit issues, in particular, city bus routes; I am also very interested in promoting walking, not just as exercise, but as a way to learn one’s community, to get to school/work/stores and to use your one and only animal body! (rarrr!)
I came across this article, Our Bodies Are Made for Walking, by an Utne reader contributor on its website. I agree and from that article, I found an interesting organization, America Walks, that promotes and helps build healthier communities by helping make them more walkable. This issue will be one I pursue more actively in 2019.