Human beings will be happier - not when they cure cancer or get to Mars or eliminate racial prejudice or flush Lake Erie but when they find ways to inhabit primitive communities again. That's my utopia.
Hard times have made me realise that hope might be the most American of qualities, the reason why many immigrants come here and our best export by far. When I've lived in other countries, it's what I've been most homesick for. After all, unless we make a place in our imaginations for what could be, there's not much point in believing in anything. You might say I'm a hopeaholic.
...I had the good luck of missing school until I was 12 or so. My parents thought that seeing the country from a trailer or caravan was as educational as a classroom, so I escaped the discouragement that, especially in my generation, came with it. I wasn't taught that boys and girls were practically different species, that America was "discovered" when the first white guy set foot on it, or that Europe deserved more space in my textbooks than Asia and Africa combined. I didn't even learn that people at the top were smarter than people at the bottom.
... So hope is contagious. With that in mind, I offer you a few of my hopes from early and late in life.
I hope we learn that whatever is done to children, they are likely to do to soc-iety. If we can raise even one generation without violence, we have no idea what might be possible on Spaceship Earth.
I hope that spirituality overwhelms religion. I say this because spirituality links, religion ranks; spirituality sees God in all living things, religion rations out God to some more than others; spirituality celebrates life, religion celebrates life after death.
I hope we choose self-authority over hierarchy. We will have to, because the purpose of the latter is to undermine the former.
I hope we learn that the end doesn't justify the means; on the contrary, the means create the ends.
I hope that racism is finally seen as a fiction invented to justify the taking over of land and power. This remains true whether its objects are Africans or Arabs, Jews or the Kwei/San people.
I hope the female half of the world takes back control of the means of reproduction: our own bodies. After all, women are in the original secondary spot because some men wanted to control reproduction, establish paternity and ownership of children and force the bearing of more workers, more soldiers. That's how we got into this mess. Reversing it is the only way to get out.
I hope that men break out of the masculine prison that: a) justifies males dominating females; b) separates men from the full circle of their human qualities; and c) cons the many men at the bottom into endangering their lives to protect the few men at the top.