Well. Let’s start with why I stopped posting.
I felt I was either repeating myself about urban planning issues or writing about the various things I’m interested, giving my blog zero cohesiveness. Then, I went to graduate school and as you might imagine, it is crazy busy! It’s also a lot more of a competitive atmosphere than I expected or like. I thought about dropping out every day for the six weeks.
Then I got an e-mail from SMART. Sustainable Mobility & Accessibility Research & Transformation. I had applied to work-study with them at the beginning of the year and they just hired me two weeks go.
The more I learn about this cooperative group, the more excited I get. It is exactly what I have been looking for. It is an unpretentious, holistic approach to transportation solutions globally. It’s all about collaboration and the idea that no one is an expert on everything and we all bring the pieces of the puzzle together. And they’re affiliated with U of M? How is this possible? Academia has gotten ridiculously competitive and individualistic – ownership of ideas, research, and work is the most important thing to people and I really believe this has stunted our progress in America. No one wants to work together, especially across disciplines. We’re too compartmentalized and need to realize that we can’t fix anything without trying to see the whole elephant.
So right now I’m just learning up on what SMART has been doing, watching a lot of videos from their past two summits. I can’t wait to meet all the people. I can’t believe what an amazing opportunity fell into my lap. What a godsend.
SO, I want to write again. Especially with this upcoming election. I forgot to register to vote. I feel pretty bad.
I want to say that the peppercorn I can take away from this Tea Party Movement is the idea of looking to our founding fathers for inspiration of how to move forward. That is probably a misinterpretation of the TP movement, since I think they want to move backwards in time, which is impossible, but it is my interpretation none the less. The founding fathers were complete radicals. They dreamed up a new system and just did it. They wrote that constitution. They went out on a limb. They claimed freedom and rights for themselves, even if they didn’t include everyone at the time.
No one these days has that genius or audacity. Protesting and internet campaigns are drops in a bucket. They are weak and meant for mob-mentality. Power should not be given to the people just because there are a lot of people who feel the same way. Power should be given to innovative solutions. Power should be given to the most amazing ideas out there. Boldness should mean standing up for an equitable future and then making it happen. Not simply by voting for a “lesser of two evils” candidate, but by completely overhauling a system that has been failing us for years. We are more than a system! Look at the reasons you may hate political talk, those of you who do. It’s not because it goes over your head, it’s because you know it’s just a game that doesn’t get you anywhere.
The real political movement is how you live your life. What stores you go to, how much you drive, how you treat people, what church you support, and what movies you watch, books you choose to read. Gay romantic comedies are the best indicator of our shifting politics. Lady Gaga is a supreme indicator that things are shifting.
Let backwards be backwards and continue working for a better future for our kids.