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Controlled Burning in the Forest & DC

Controlled Burning in the Forest & DC

Reading about how to prevent fi res like those that have happened in California and Australia, it appears fi re and politics may influence us in similar ways. One proposal to lessen the effect of fi res gaining popularity is controlled burning. Giving a fi re nothing to burn makes sense and not one approach will fi t every locale, but fi res often spread quickly because of brush. Couldn’t we simply remove or bulldoze some of that and accomplish a similar result?

When compared to a controlled burning, would that make a difference? It might with our health. We know that when you burn something you basically atomize it and once on that atomic level, it goes everywhere. We breathe it. When a forest burns, everything in the forest, including poison ivy, etc., it gets atomized, mixed and airborne and then some of us get scratchy eyes, cough or sneeze. We react as it were spring. It affects our immune system. I wonder if puling some “bad weeds” or “bad growth” wouldn’t work for forests and for our national government.

There are worse things, such as a chemical plant or oil well burning. Car exhaust. Maybe we need an agency that looks at possible environmental hazards and protect humans. Hum.

Today that looks like an archaic idea. It is definitely from a previous era when we did that. Who says you can’t learn by studying history? What we should know is staying healthy comes back to the basics—wash your hands, avoid having people cough on you and don’t cough on others, eat what’s good for you and exercise. Keep your immune system as strong as possible and your body will do the best it can. Maybe that’s what missing in Washington DC too. Is it time to wash our hands of this mess without attacking or coughing all over everyone, nourish ourselves with visions of possible futures, and exercise our rights?

Looking at how people in DC act now that certainly looks like a stretch—if not full blown exercise. Doesn’t it make us/ US more immune to the toxins they fi ll the air with when it’s easier for people to exercise their rights—they register and vote. Looking way back, the challenge for those who formed our government was getting the colonies to give up a little of their independence to support the common good. Over and over they refused to give up any of their regional power or local special interests for anything considered in the common good—until concessions, such as not eliminating slavery right away, got them to agree to the US Constitution. Colonial representatives, for example, voted for independence but no state paid the tax their representative agreed on to fund the troops during the war for independence. George Washington and others said the war went a year or more longer than necessary because of that and almost caused them to fail. That debt was one of the major reasons the Colonies and the people voted to agree to a binding Constitution. The ideals and rights they stated there was never a description of the way things were. Accomplishing each step towards those ideals has meant going against some local monetary policy or interest. The Constitution is not supposed to be secondary, but national needs often become secondary to local interests. Just insuring that we share the same rights no matter what state we live in has been an ongoing battle.

Maybe our environment threats—unsolvable on solely a local level—will be what unites us—and has us challenge the powers that have it be another way. If we don’t view the government is there to ensure and protect our rights and shared common resources, what is it? What is nourishing is when you look at the way those committed to uniting us viewed this. They envisioned a government—a format—that was not top down but bottom up. One with ensured rights and safeguards from those who would force their will on others, whether that meant a mob or a monarch. That meant removing the influence of all forms of aristocracy—whether the influence of money, region, race, mandatory religion, a dominant gender, limiting who could vote, and even an arrogant class that believed they were better and could do better than what people, collectively, open to input and ideas, could do together. Those were ideas so radical it didn’t exist anywhere. Getting there took a step at a time. Still does. One thing they knew and allowed for, is we would evolve. We still

are. No country had been formed by, of and for the people with the idea that the government was there to allow all people to maximize their full potential—not simply enrich the top. The “needed revolutions” Thomas Jefferson said we should have from time to time were revolutions in our selves, our thinking and take one more step.

—Steve Hays

About The Author

Steve Hays

Publisher and Editor of The Life Connection Magazine Print and Online versions.

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