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more wisdom from Blake

January 22, 2021

The post here on January 14th was written by my friend Blake, who shared a letter he sent to the next generation of his family. It garnered positive responses, one of which moved Blake to write this:

A reply to your very fine comments.

I am humbled that you enjoyed my thoughts and I share Allen’s thought that a new day is upon us. I would, however, be less certain that those who follow after us will fail to follow our allusions, or the history to which we allude. We do not seem to have bequeathed them much of a legacy — a broken body politic, an ever-widening chasm of inequity, and a planet devastated by our avarice. And yet, they still rise and give voice to their own hopes, and bestow upon us their wisdom.

Yesterday was Inauguration Day. After the horror of two weeks ago (and the shame of the past four years), perhaps, the nightmare is ending. I fear for the world, however. My kids (the ones in North America) were very involved in the BLM movement last summer, but, I am afraid, because they may be losing faith in representative government. Where else can wisdom be found, if not in the will of the people?

Yesterday at 830am Pacific, I was in my study looking out the windows, to the southeast where our sun rises later on winter days. It was cloudy here, as it often is in the dark months but just before 9am the clouds in the eastern sky fractured, just a bit. It was not the warm orange glow of promise but rather the white blinding light of hope.

And then, just as quickly, the clouds swirled and the East was again dark.

Today the world awoke from its own nightmare with that same confusion — unspeakably injured by the malice of the last four years, eyes lowered, perhaps afraid to gaze too long into the possibility of healing.

Yesterday I had thought to text my kids, “Thank G_d the nightmare is over.” But then I realized it was not (solely) the hand of the Divine that roused a sleeping nation. And it certainly was not the old white men in the grey granite walls that called us to hear our better angels. Rather, it was them — the kids, in Seattle and Portland and Detroit, in Louisville and Kenosha and Minneapolis — the ones who marched, held signs, bore witness — and coughed up tear gas while dodging rubber bullets. They were the ones who gave the world this flickering ray of hope. And it is to them that the work of keeping hope alive now falls.

I do believe they hear us. And I do believe in them.

Thank you again, BR


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