Advance or Destruct

    October 11, 2020

    Photo: Oct. 10th, Sun Valley, Idaho

    We have to instill dignity and reverence in everyday life. -A. Stoddard

    Photograph by Justin Sullivan / Getty

    The New Yorker

    Dave Eggers:

    What are we doing here? When the air is red and the street lights are on at noon, we ask this question. When there are twenty-three major fires burning at once throughout California, and seventeen thousand firefighters battling them, we ask this question. When a firefighter dies in a blaze begun during a gender-reveal party, we ask this question. We ponder these questions on a smoke-tinged Friday, and on Saturday the sky is clear and we’re at the beach again. This is life in 2020 California.


    It’s not right, any of this. The fact that it gets harder every year, that fires get more frequent, bigger, deadlier. The fact that we have to count on volunteers, and firefighters from Colorado, Texas, Mexico, Australia. The exorbitant expense.

    There aren’t enough people, there aren’t enough planes and bulldozers and trucks.

    There’s too much fire. We can’t keep living like this. More than anything, we can’t expect firefighters to live like this.


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