Friday, December 12, 2008
winter noon, east wharf beach
this is my favorite beach in madison. madison is a bland town, carefully controlled to keep up property values at the expense of life, vitality, change, and the poor. it is true, i have to admit, that if madison opened the town to the poor to live and go to school this beach might not be so perfectly maintained. not because of poor people directly, but because town revenues would slip, and maintenance would suffer, and more people would be using the same facilities. but let me tell you: opening the town to the poor would still make it a better place. a scruffier parking lot or a dirtier bathroom would not detract one iota from the beauty of the beach. beauty cannot be touched by small things; it soars above. and morally the town would gain. democracy would be advanced. apartheid systems of any type militate against democracy, because people of different "kinds" (as in, "i know your kind!") are kept apart and instilled with mutual hatred and mistrust. who wins then? the ones in charge.
lets use a metaphor: i would rather be on a crappy bus, with no shock absorbers, a rank toilet, crowded, and a driver who gets lost --- but all riders are equal and respected -- than on a swift train or plane in which a majority are forced into second class and held there. just because most people simply decide it is better to shut up and put up does not make the system right.
oh yeah -- i DO ride on a crappy bus! all the time! but i stand by the point.