Opinion: Forward progress is a slow process

Think of Chief Seattle and Rodney King.

As I watch and listen to the current controversy about the Seward statue in Juneau, I try to keep in mind the essence, to me, of Chief Seattle’s teaching. How can we own the earth? How can we own our mother? He reportedly said “Humans merely share the earth. The earth does not belong to man, man belongs to the earth.” Since even before becoming humans, we have a long history of competing for control of land and resources. It’s basic biology. As I look at human history, I have seen little evidence that this is changing very much. This is not to say that we should not keep trying. As Rodney King said after the Los Angeles riots “Can’t we just learn to get along”?

Forward progress is a slow process.

Bruce Conant,

Juneau