Here is the Future You Requested • November 2021

November 5, 2021

Here we are, it’s the future now, and it kinda reads like a science-fiction novel: Global pandemic, fascistic kleptocracy on the rise in the U.S. along with a burgeoning militia movement, surveillance states, border-crossing impacts of climate change, and Boston Dynamic is making robots that could easily serve as autonomous weapons. 

In fact, I just saw an article about another robot company that’s created a robot dog that is basically an automatic rifle with four legs; one of the article comments gushed, “I want a war dog!”  

Oh, you’ll get your war dog, all right. 

Right, and let’s not forget, Elon “Daddy” Musk wants to strip-mine Mars and build the largest company town in the universe — and something tells me it would be awfully difficult to organize a labor union up there. 

If we can mix genres, climate-change forest fires even gave us a “Day Without A Dawn” last year here in San Francisco, it felt like Sauron was gonna send in the orcs.

We are living our stories, through our choices as individuals and a society, and the stories we tell each other, in that regard, really matter. 

In her amazing speech at the National Book Awards in 2014, Ursula K. Le Guin said:

“Hard times are coming, when we’ll be wanting the voices of writers who can see alternatives to how we live now, can see through our fear-stricken society and its obsessive technologies to other ways of being, and even imagine real grounds for hope. We’ll need writers who can remember freedom — poets, visionaries — realists of a larger reality.”

Glimpses through fiction that tell us true things about our nature, and perhaps inspire us as we strive to make better choices about the future we’ve requested.

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