I get really sad when I think of America and the way in which it is eroding its soul by retreating into cars and large, seperated houses. The connections between one another get thinner and thinner.
Urbana, Maryland is a town not far from mine, which, while not ideal, is admirable in at least trying to head in the right direction in terms of sustainability, smart growth, etc.
Sadly, however, because of the mighty, paramout importance of the car (nothing should speed it down, nothing should thin its roads), the kids in this somewhat pedestrian neighborhood need to now be bused across the street to get to school. Kids that live 400 yards from their school walk 200 hundered to the big intersection, board a bus, and get driven the rest of the way.
How obvious do the signals need to be? American culture holds rational utilitarianism so high, we cannot for a second recognize the of more intangiable issues like a child’s emotional / psychological / spiritual relationship of where they go to school and where they live.
We sacrifice so much for the sake of our car-centric living.
The Washington Post had an interesting piece on some renegade parents who let their young kids roam their neighborhoods. It discusses how what was the norm in terms of child freedom is now incredibily rare. We should all imagine about what sort of mental / psychological relationship one had with their surroundings when they were able to allow their young children to roam their neighborhoods. The peace, the connection. And what we have now.
Incredible what we’ve lost. We should get it back.