Even when contemplating huge global-historical issues — especially then — it’s important to stay grounded in the present time and place, the specific here and now, and the minute affairs of everyday interpersonal relations.

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Bart Everson
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Dear Daughter,

It’s 2050. You are 42 years old now, a year older than my own age when you were born. You may have children of your own now, or not. Who knows? So much is unclear from where I sit in 2018.

I don’t know where you’ll be living. New Orleans, the city of your birth, is the only home you’ve ever known. But will it still be viable in 2050? I hope so, but given rising sea levels, coastal erosion, and climate change, there’s reason to wonder.

I’m writing this today to let you know that these issues were very much on my mind in 2018 — and on the minds of so many other people around the world. In fact these issues have been with us well before you were born.

At some point in the future, people will look back at us and wonder, did they know? did they care? what did they do? So I’m writing this today to let you know that some of us did know and did care and struggled to turn our society around.

The struggle today is primarily political, but I believe it also has a spiritual dimension. A reverence for Mother Earth renews our will even when we feel defeated. That is why I’ve remained engaged both in building a local Green Party and developing an Eco-Pagan religious practice. Both of these aim to keep Mother Earth at the center of all we do.

You are only ten as I write this, and naturally you take much for granted. We live in a bubble of like-minded people, and yet I often feel we’re out in the margins, on the fringe, when compared to our nation. In the coming decades, that may change. The Earth-centered perspective may become more widespread. By 2050, perhaps we’ll be in good company. I sincerely hope so.

Despite running off to community meetings every so often, I hope you will remember that I took time to be with you, to read to you at bedtime, and just to enjoy each other’s company. Even when contemplating huge global-historical issues — especially then — it’s important to stay grounded in the present time and place, the specific here and now, and the minute affairs of everyday interpersonal relations. That’s all a part of my responsibility to you, which I wouldn’t shirk for anything.

Much love,
Dad

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To My Grandchildren,

It’s my hope that the following will be helpful as you navigate your futures.  These are the confessions of a climate activist:

 

Dear future generations,

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Dear Future

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Dear Tomorrow,

Be the person who shows up. Be the person who continues to advocate for change because change is possible – it is possible in the most partisan of politics.

 

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Tonight at bedtime, you asked, seemingly out of nowhere, “why are the glaciers disappearing?”

 

Dear Donatella,

We ran through the woods laughing, crying, and living.

 

Dear Tomorrow,

Awareness is key. Learning about this issue can seem like a small effort compared to other actions, but it’s the most important.

 

Dear You Tomorrow,

What we failed to do, at least early on, was to see how important it was to put those solutions together. To combine into a way forward.

 

Dear Tomorrow

I hope that environmental issues are a thing of the past.

 

Future Message to Earth,

Hope there will be no more droughts,
And no more pollution with which we fought,
Regarding every human should be taught,
Ensuring that we uniformly follow these thoughts.

 

Hey kiddo,

I’ll be here to tell you all the ways I have fought for the health of our home, and fought to protect all of the wide, open spaces for you to run in. When you’re old enough, we can fight together.

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