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The Sun Interview

If Your House Is On Fire

Kathleen Dean Moore On The Moral Urgency Of Climate Change

Every decision that we make — about where we find information, where we get food, what we wear, how we make our living, how we invest our time and our wealth, how we travel or keep ourselves warm and sheltered — is an opportunity for us to express our values both by saying yes to what we believe in and by saying no to what we don’t believe in.

The Sun Interview

Bridging The Green Divide

Van Jones On Jobs, Jails, And Environmental Justice

“Eco-apartheid” is a situation in which you have ecological haves and have-nots. In other words, if you are in the San Francisco Bay Area, and you visit Marin County, you’ll find hybrid vehicles, solar panels, organic food, organic everything. If you then get in your car and drive twenty minutes, you’ll be in west Oakland, where people are literally choking on the fumes of the last century’s pollution-based technologies. That’s eco-apartheid, and it’s morally wrong, because we should deliver clean jobs and health benefits not just to the wealthy, but also to the people who need them most. Eco-apartheid doesn’t work on a practical level either, because you can’t have a sustainable economy when only 20 percent of the people can afford to pay for hybrids, solar panels, and organic cuisine, while the other 80 percent are still driving pollution-based vehicles to the same pollution-based jobs and struggling to make purchases at Wal-Mart.

Essays, Memoirs, and True Stories

Trail’s End

I know I’m in trouble when N. starts saving for a tent and sleeping bags. Then she brings home a book with the ominous title, North Carolina Hiking Trails. Actually, I’m fond of hiking, especially if I can relax at the end of the day with a bed and a bath. But to my wife, this is like washing down a gourmet dinner with a Dr. Pepper. She wants an experience of nature unmediated by civilized comfort. She wants to show me and J., her thirteen-year-old son, how to rough it.

The Sun Interview

Reclaiming The Dark

An Interview With Starhawk

When we’re striving for all light we get away from the dark. As a witch I see the world itself as sacred. If there were such a thing as heresy in the craft, which there isn’t, that would be it — saying that you want to get away from half of what’s in the world. It’s a denial of what sacredness is. That particular metaphor, the light/dark split, is really a fundamental basis of racism in western culture. It was used very deliberately in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, in the beginning of the slave trade. Part of the justification for taking the African slaves was that their color proved they were cursed by God. It has always been a metaphor used for genocide against people who were dark, against dark-haired Jews.

Essays, Memoirs, and True Stories

Stepbrothers

Gays And The Men’s Movement

White male privilege isn’t confined to those who own banks, control empires, and manipulate governments. Even the freakiest-looking punk-rock anarchist is only a haircut and a costume change away from enjoying a white male privilege black men will never know.

Essays, Memoirs, and True Stories

Us And Them

Time was when I knew the racists were the lunch-counter owners who refused to serve blacks, the warmongers were the generals who planned wars and ordered the killing of innocent people, and the polluters were the industrialists whose factories fouled the air, water, and land. I was a good guy, boycotting, marching, and sitting-in to protest the actions of the bad guys.

The Sun Interview

Like Wandering Ghosts

Edward Tick On How The U.S. Fails Its Returning Soldiers

Certainly the Vietnam veterans were made scapegoats for many of the illegal and brutal tactics of that war. Then there are the veterans of all the little forgotten wars: Grenada, Somalia, Lebanon, El Salvador, the secret ops in Africa and Eastern Europe. They are like wandering ghosts, neither honored nor recognized. Many of them are not even classified as combat veterans. I worked with one man who’d been in Somalia and taken part in the fighting around the U.S. Black Hawk helicopter that went down there. He isn’t classified as a combat veteran, and other combat vets don’t accept him because he was “in the shit” for only thirty hours. But anyone who knows the story of what happened that day in Mogadishu can see that it was enough to traumatize anybody.

The Sun Interview

Environmentalism And The Mystique Of Whiteness

An Interview With Carl Anthony

I agree that, no matter what the noise level, each person is entitled to hear his or her own inner voice. That’s an important first step to hearing the voices of others, as well as the cry of the earth. But the ability to respond intelligently, creatively, and compassionately to the claims of different human communities is undermined by the false sense of privilege that comes from thinking of oneself as “white.” Wanting to hear the voice of the earth, the notion that nature is crying out in pain, has a limited potential for reaching and touching many people who are living much more prosaic lifestyles than those who think about these matters only in an intellectual and philosophical way. People of color often view alarmist predictions about the collapse of the ecosystem as the latest stratagem by the elite to maintain political and economic control.

The Sun Interview

Forget What They Told You

The Truth According To Greg Palast

The idea that America’s a democracy is a fucking lie. We’ve had one fixed election after another. By my calculations, Hubert Humphrey beat Richard Nixon in 1968. Of course, Humphrey was a jackal as well. But what is not widely understood is that we’ve always had a system in America of not counting certain votes. My good friends on the Left are afraid that the Republicans are going to steal the next election by computer — that the software is going to allow Karl Rove to change the vote. Well, most people who worry about that are white. Black people know they’ve stolen the vote the old-fashioned way for centuries.