There are many ways to take Greg Williams’ letter “The Old Saw” (Dec. 20): as a surrender to corporate interests, a denial of today’s climate reality, an attempt to disempower courageous youth in their efforts to hold to account supposed leaders who, with regard to climate change, have repeatedly proven themselves worse than non-responsive.
But I choose to see his letter as a challenge — namely, how do we clean our hands? What realistic options are open to us in the face of our dependence on, and complicity in creating, the very situation we’re trying to confront? How do we change our dependencies and wants so the means of obtaining them, and the consequences of using them, benefit not only ourselves, but also the health of the earth as a whole?
These are, I think, some of the tough questions underlying the superficial questions Williams asked. And rather than serving to discredit a meaningful act of socio-ecological engagement, perhaps these questions help take it to a level it needs to go.