Discourse / Letters / November 3, 2010

Letters to the Editor: How are we supposed to develop on our own?

I have decided to write like my friend is doing. We’re gonna reach out to you all.

You know we have a right to develop the same way any other city has the right to develop.

Unfortunately for all, the money your class has, they can’t create another place like this. Not on the moon or Mars. For all the great technology you call progress, your leaders are not going to manage that. Galesburg is an example of a community in crisis. It is not a matter of adaptation for us. I want to agree with Artie: You don’t get it and you desperately need to.

It is a matter of survival.

I used to go outside when I was little. The grass was green and wild and the water was clean in Lake Storey. Not anymore. I am afraid to let my children go out at night—sometimes I worry during the day. Poverty does crazy things to people. It makes them resort to unlawful methods and acts of aggression even on one another. It separates us the same way your privilege secretly separates you. Separates you from yourself and even from your conscience.

In places like this community, denial of our situation is unavoidable. But in the cities where you all are – the ones with the populations that can help your fellow brethren – denial is everywhere. The daily denial is strong and the people know the problems are real, yet cannot summon the urgency to act. There are too many funny things on YouTube, right? Therein lies is the trail of resentment, in your actions and hidden disdain. People like your leaders get together at your conferences and they write up these papers. These papers stating, “This is what we should do to help.” And they all sign it. They call it a “pledge.” These passive, gratifying actions, these are the real challenge we face in getting you to help us. They are but sheets of paper with the actions you should be doing not writing.

If we can’t handle this together soon, it will be too late for everyone.

Hope is all we have left but even this is in short supply.

Why don’t you even comment on these letters? Why don’t you even acknowledge us in your virtual world?

Lorraine Sawyer

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