Thursday, August 12, 2010

We Are All Steven Slater

When Jet Blue flight attendant Steven Slater became a folk hero for his “I’m outta here” routine I thought: yeah, that sounds about right. The inevitable backlash notwithstanding, it seems Slater has tapped into the general malaise which has gripped not just our nation but the entire globe.

We are not happy campers. Polls show Republicans as despised as Democrats, climate change is baking us alive, the global economy still sucks ...if the planet had an escape hatch, who among us wouldn’t want to hit it and slide out of this mess?

I imagine that such feelings are what prompted the Pilgrims to leave the Old World for the New, and what pushed the early pioneers to head west. There’s a kind of desperation in the act, a sense that anything is better than this. Beam us up, Scotty.

Here’s the thing: while it’s nice to indulge in such fantasies, it’s also a little irresponsible. To quote my favorite Eagles song, there is no more new frontier; we have got to make it here.

We have to solve our problems, people; no one else can do it for us. We have no escape hatch from our world, from our lives, from our national crises du jour.

Why don't we roll up our sleeves and get to work?