Be wary of those afraid of movement. Take notice of the fear that drives them.
Walls are built by people who wish to keep what they have by staying still.
Those in motion have no need for them.
The desire for a static reality, one where everything is in place for all time, isn’t new. It’s just not been the policy of our people until now. Asimov wrote about it in a book about robots fifty years before the internet:
“They— fundamentalists—were not a political party; they made pretense to no formal religion. Essentially they were those who had not adapted themselves to what had once been called the Atomic Age, in the days when atoms were a novelty. Actually, they were the Simple-Lifers, hungering after a life, which to those who lived it had probably appeared not so Simple, and who had been, therefore, Simple-Lifers themselves.”
Americans are not Simple-Lifers. We are people in motion. We are world beaters. Industry leaders. Breakers of sound barriers and gravity and illness.
At least we were.
What I’ve sacrificed for our fearless culture of inclusion, mobility and progress was more than most. I’ve been to the “shittholes” of this planet. I’ve lived there. I’ve felt the dirt under my feet; the same dirt we have here. I’ve seen men and women and children living through unimaginable suffering; the same men and women and children we have here, less the suffering.
They weren’t at some lesser place; a place of diminished value with diminished people. They were simply, at the start.
Once, America was the destination. We were once, “the last best hope on earth.”
Now we’re a doughy, scared mass of abundance. Anchored behind our ideological walls, waiting for the stone ones to save us.
Moving no more.
There’s no hiding from the movement though. We can wall it off. We can keep what we have. But the world always moves. And one day, soon, maybe it already has, it will move past us. To other places where the courage to move still lives.
And then, we will be great no more.