Easily Empathizing with and Conflictedly Rooting for Poison Ivy

Bill McKibben’s introduction to his 2019 book, Falter: Has the Human Game Begun to Play Itself Out?, begins by reflecting on his 1989 text, “As the title indicates, The End of Nature was not a cheerful book, and sadly its gloom has been vindicated.  My basic point was that humans had so altered the planet that not an inch was beyond our reach, an idea that scientists underlined a decade later when they began referring to our era as the Anthropocene.  This volume is bleak as well – in some ways bleaker, because more time has passed and we are deeper in the hole…Put simply, between ecological destruction and technological hubris, the human experiment is now in question.  The stakes feel very high, and the odds very long, and the trends very ominous.”[1]  This is why a part of me can’t help but root, however conflictedly, for Poison Ivy in G. Willow Wilson (writer), Marcio Takara (artist), Arif Prianto (colorist), and Hassan Otsman-Elhaou (letterer)’s new miniseries, Poison Ivy, despite her goal being, you know, the absolute end of the human race.  Because maybe we kinda deserve it?  At least maybe we don’t not deserve it. 

Continue reading

Lessons from Doctor Who’s “Orphan 55” – Climate Change and Beyond

As I write this, it’s the eve of the 2020 presidential election.  I’m anxious.  I’m concerned.  But most of all, I’m hopeful.  I say that with absolute sincerity.  I’m hopeful that tomorrow will yield a change of course after the last four years that have felt like fifteen.  I’m hopeful.  It’s a welcome feeling in an age when, for so many reasons, hope feels like a far rarer commodity than it did even just a few years ago.  However, I wasn’t planning on writing tonight.  I probably shouldn’t be, as I’m sure I’ll be up late watching election returns tomorrow.  But I was rewatching “Orphan 55” tonight and it felt remarkably relevant.  Seeing the Doctor (Jodie Whittaker), Yaz (Mandip Gill), Ryan (Tosin Cole), and Graham (Bradley Walsh) navigate this hostile planet, a post began to grow.  So what the heck?  I guess I’ll sleep Wednesday…hopefully soundly.

Continue reading

New American Resistance – 100 Days In…

Between midterm grading and chaperone duties while traveling, I’ve been too busy and too tired to do the writing  and research this series requires.  As I’ve caught up on the news, I only became more tired.  Why?  Well, he’s dropping bombs on ISISHe’s itchin’ to fight North Korea.  The Senate went nuclear and the EPA was ordered to remove climate change from their website for starters.  Despite emotional fatigue, we can’t let up.  So let’s jump in.  This series aims to a) help us stay informed on the events unfolding in America and b) urge readers to add their voice to the chorus calling out for justice.  We must be aware.  We must be vocal.  We must be active.  We must be loving.  This is how we will triumph and how we will transform our lives, our nation, and our world. Continue reading

New American Resistance – 20 February

I am ANGRY this week.  My righteous fire has cooled a bit since Friday but I’m still angry.  This last week has seen an egregious attack on our health care system which could leave many without life saving coverage AND the most direct and reprehensible attack against the environment I’ve ever seen in my lifetime.  But I’m channeling my righteous anger into something productive.  I ask you to do the same.  All of this has yet to be voted on.  All of this can be stopped if we raise our voices, united.  Without further ado, this weekly series aims to a) help us stay informed on the events unfolding in America and b) urge readers to add their voice to the chorus calling out for justice.  Continue reading