Carol just sent me my horoscope, which quotes Rebecca Solnit on the necessity of revolution:
“I still think the revolution is to make the world safe for poetry, meandering, for the frail and vulnerable, the rare and obscure, the impractical and local and small, and I feel that we’ve lost if we don’t practice and celebrate them now, instead of waiting for some ’60s never-neverland of after-the-revolution. And we’ve lost the revolution if we relinquish our full possibilities and powers.” — Rebecca Solnit, interview by Benjamin Cohen in The Believer, September, 2009.
And this reminded me what Adrienne Rich said about poetry and social change back in 2006:
“Poetry has the capacity — in its own ways and by its own means — to remind us of something we are forbidden to see. A forgotten future: a still-uncreated site whose moral architecture is founded not on owndership and dispossession, the subjection of women, torture and bribes, outcast and tribe, but on the continuous redefining of freedom — that word now held under house arrest by the rhetoric of the ‘free ‘ market. This ongoing future, written off over and over, is still within view. All over the world its paths are being rediscovered and reinvented: through collective action, through mahy kinds of art.Its elementary condition is the recovery and redistribution of the world’s resources that have been extracted from the many by the few.” — Adrienne Rich, Poetry and Commitment (New York: W. W. Norton, 2007), p. 36.
Our legislative leaders here in California have issued a joint statement on the presidential election. This statement, issued by California Senate President pro Tempore Kevin de León nd California Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, says in part:
“California has long set an example for other states to follow. And California will defend its people and our progress. We are not going to allow one election to reverse generations of progress at the height of our historic diversity, scientific advancement, economic output, and sense of global responsibility.
“We will be reaching out to federal, state and local officials to evaluate how a Trump Presidency will potentially impact federal funding of ongoing state programs, job-creating investments reliant on foreign trade, and federal enforcement of laws affecting the rights of people living in our state. We will maximize the time during the presidential transition to defend our accomplishments using every tool at our disposal.” Read the complete statement.
The statement also points out that California has the largest economy of any state — and there’s an implication that the reason we have the largest economy is that we actually believe in science (including climate science), and welcome diversity.
It’s going to be very interesting to see what happens here in California, now that the Democrats have a supermajority. California is headed down a very different path from the path that will be taken by Republican-dominated Washington. Want to bet someone starts printing bumper stickers that read, “Don’t blame me, I’m from California”?