A Cup of Water

The mariner hasn’t posted for some time. As a reason, a good metaphor would be how you may feel if you have one cup of water and the uncontrolled forest fire rapidly approaches. You may “stand your ground” and throw the cup of water with great ferocity. Then. . .

So that is the circumstance: the mariner fills his cup of water and tosses it into the raging selfishness and stupidity of humanity. Pope Frank was right when he said the world worships the religion of capitalism when it should be worshiping the sanctity of every individual life – human and otherwise.

A book was published recently with a premise that every living creature, including humans, always will take the short win rather than act in behalf of the longer term circumstance. A clear example was the unwillingness to tackle global warming for fear of less profit, higher taxes, more regulations, and a redistribution of power across national boundaries. In other words, today’s short win profit counts more than tomorrow’s greater loss. Individual examples are eating the doughnut now and worrying about obesity later – if ever; using a credit card to satisfy immediate reward and worrying about debt later. The author predicted the demise of species, including humans, and a world ill fit for the current ecosystem.

A microcosm of that premise is the Mississippi River. The mariner was fond of the river even before he moved to the Midwest. The Mississippi is an amazing creature of nature that has flowed endlessly through the millennia. The ecosystems supported by the river make it come to life. The river has its own natural behavior, considering the floodplain part of its prerogative as a big river. The Mississippi River has been shackled by humans with hydroelectric dams, estuary-killing levees, greedy developers and disrespectful farmers and corporations that deliberately allow damaging chemicals to flow into the water, destroying many different ecosystems. There is a three mile stretch along the Louisiana shoreline that is not fit for painted hulls. Between the Mississippi delta and that of the Rio Grande, one third of the Gulf of Mexico is a dead sea.

The mariner’s lamentations will do no more good than the lamentations of the prophet Amos.

The mariner thinks he will go to the river’s edge to watch wildlife struggling as he to exist in the mire.

 Ancient Mariner

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