Reader Opinion: Wants and beliefs


“We have met the enemy, and they are us” has been attributed to both an Earth Day poster and to a comic strip; both from the last century when we learned of newer issues that may either nurture or threaten our futures. Five decades later we add new categories of “woke.”

Many tipping points have been reached and passed regarding the survival of other less-regarded species. There is speculation as to where that mark is for us and ours.

Various shades of red-lines are now presenting themselves as we take our next breaths.

The past may become better known as ‘the time of wants and beliefs,” where considerable weight was given to what was an urge for us or what was urged upon us. Many, including myself, will want to look back and hold onto this earlier time for its comforts and familiarities.

The future may be soon understood to be “the time of needs and knowledge,” where a growing impetus will be toward measured means and methods with empirically determined outcomes. Many, including myself, will want to look forward toward better possible prospects for us and ours.


This may be despite the likelihood of vexing inconveniences and awkward accommodations of newer knowledge that will challenge earlier beliefs.

The sea-change will be both anchored in and propelled by metrics; from ever-increasing quantities and quality of information processed at ever-increasing speeds. They will offer quantifiable calculations of viable pathways for better survival.

The inevitable outcomes will be weighted forward for those whose futures are long rather than by those whose futures are short.

We may be forced to transition from what we want to believe toward what we need to know — perhaps demarking the former as our yesterdays and the latter as our tomorrows.

Philip Vaughan

Lake Edward Township

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