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Point of View: Wise Up or It’s Lights Out

Wed, 07/26/2023 - 17:19

I told our nature writer the other day that where we lived, in inner Springs, contrary to a recent report, there were plenty of fireflies. Ours being largely a blue-collar neighborhood may be the reason. I sense that where I live — “in the corridor,” as one real estate agent once put it dismissively — there’s not an overwhelming impulsion to have everything just so. We’re not over the top, I’ll warrant, when it comes to gilding the lily, and thus fireflies, unable to bioluminescently make their needs known in light-polluted skies, can continue to hook up and frolic in the dark.

I haven’t done a study, but I wonder if it’s not chiefly in pampered estate areas where preened lawns, fertilizers, and pesticides abound where there’s actually been a decline. When O’en and I walk about our neighborhood in the evening there’s a whole lotta signaling going on.

As for the “moderate drought” we’re said to be in, I’m a bit dubious about that too. Our basement floor was wet a week or so ago owing to no apparent cause other than a high water table, though, with grandchildren visiting, the clothes washer pump may have been overworked; what was sucked up was sudsy. And now, in the wake of last week’s deluge, I’m reluctant to go down, avoidance being my wont. Though I’m mindful that the threat Trump poses is one thing that cannot be ducked.

If elected again, he, a law unto himself, would abrogate the rule of law in this country by arrogating to himself autocratic powers. (Remember, our system of tripartite government was set up to check the overweening power of a king.)

John F. Kelly, the former chief of staff, said in a front-page New York Times story last week that made the Trump camp’s government-takeover plans plain, “It would be chaotic. It just simply would be chaotic, because he’d continually be trying to exceed his authority, but the sycophants would go along with it. It would be a nonstop gunfight with the Congress and the courts.”

A nonstop gunfight with a loose cannon in the White House, he should have said.

There have been enough tyrants in this world, wielders of power who, despite their protestations, are not interested in the greater good, but only in their self-aggrandizement and in their reflected glory. If this country, whose ultimate power resides with the people through the ballot box, repeats the mistake of 2016, we have only ourselves to blame.

What does this have to do with fireflies? Just this: It’s lights out if we don’t wise up.


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