Our little world is not only getting smaller but more crowded with the population now exceeding seven billion people. India continues to lead the pack and is now slated to surpass China soon in total population growth. Our cities are getting bigger and bigger. My question would be are they building cities worth building a future in? Are they making the cities more lasting, livable and prosperous?
Two cities I am intimately familiar with are Dallas and Houston, Texas, and I would not live in either one. In Austin, Texas, at the height of rush hour, you can actually get out of your automobile and walk faster than the traffic moves!
But all the news is not dire, I hear that San Diego has a new light rail system and it is getting commuters home faster. They are now building electric sub-stations that are out of sight, in Las Vegas they have Microwave transmission towers that are camouflaged as pine trees. So in some cases, progress is starting to show up, albeit, slowly but surely.
The sad part of all this is in recent weeks we have watched people taking to the streets by the millions to protest political, economic, and social conditions in the big cities across our land, where the quality of life has eroded seriously, to epidemic proportions. Our cities are now turning into killing grounds for social misfits and predators, willing to put you down for a pack of Marlboro’s. In some cases the best advice is “don’t let the sun go down on you here.”
On top of being dangerous, it is also unhealthy at the same time. This morning I am reading where it says that living in the city can be hazardous to your mental health according to scientists. A recent study in Germany has linked poor performance in math and other area’s to living under stressful situations in big cities. Which should not come as any big surprise to anyone who has ever lived in or near a big city.
As I often like to consider myself a little bit ahead of the curve, I knew that one for a fact before I read it. Big City living will bring you down, faster than a Hong Kong Second. That is why I am a country dweller here in the Heartland. Lack of stress is why I live here, out in the sticks. (Okie speech)
There is just one apparent drawback to all of this. I live in El Reno, Oklahoma. And as most you know, Oklahoma is the Extreme Bad Weather Capitol of America. We have it all, thunderstorms, hail, floods, tornadoes. droughts and recently earthquakes. I get enough excitement here to last a lifetime. Regardless, I know I am better off here at the Goat Farm.
I know deep down that I would not adapt well to life in the Big City. You see … I already know how to drive and I cannot speak Spanish.
I used to read about the far away exotic and dangerous cities and places of the world with mystery and awe. I would read the stories of the poor and the downtrodden in the third world, the weak and the hungry. I would gaze upon the photographs and see the barrio’s and the ghetto’s where hope came to die.
Now days I read about what is going on here at home and I realize this.
America in its own way, is morphing itself into the very same thing, it has become like one of these distant troubled places, and I just thank my lucky stars, that I am here where I am.
Locked down in the country, down at the end of the Yellow Brick Road.