Or perhaps I should say, we’re catching on to the “root meaning” of “radical, ” which, in fact, means “to the root”!
This caught my attention:
The above business is construction. But instead of yet more construction, requiring raw materials usually raped from the earth, embedding yet more energy into buildings, how about utilizing what we have already in a more efficient manner? I think about the enormous IU campus here in Bloomington. Nearly empty all summer long! I think of all the McMansions with more than five bedrooms, with one or two inhabitants rattling around inside, on their way to becoming old, scared of what the future might bring.
Imagine all that could happen at the university during summer months!
Imagine all the McMansions becoming houses that hold small communities, where elders are cared for as they age!
These are radical ideas, I know, but just a few years ago, these next two projects were radical, too. Both involve food, which trumps even shelter as our #1 need as creatures of this Mother Earth.
From New York to California, prison gardening programs serve as cost-effective food sources and provide inmates with better nutrition.
And what about when those prisoners are released, newly self-reliant and full of growing power. Perhaps outfits like this next one will hire them. So far, this Florida effort is all-volunteer. However, as more and more people realize that the more local, even hyperlocal, our food (i.e., not from “within 100 miles” but here, right here, say within 30 miles), the more resilient will our communities become in the face of whatever comes next. As long as we’re still in the money-economy, let’s pay people to transform our lawns! And as we gradually shift to the gift-economy, well then, those who love to grow food and share it with others will naturally do so. Just as those who love to do other things that we need will share their gifts, as well.
The key always is to ask the question: “How does Nature do it?” We need to follow her direction, if we wish to both survive and thrive.