Asterisked (It’s complicated)


Saturday I went to a rally in Boston in support of Cape Wind*, a proposed wind farm that would lie off the coast of Cape Cod and is, once again, threatened. For fourteen years, this  sustainable-energy project has been fought by a) the fossil fuel industry** b) wealthy, Cape Cod home-owners concerned about aesthetics*** c) Bird lovers **** d) the Cape and Nantucket Sound islands’ Wampanoag tribe. *****  Twenty-six lawsuits! Not to mention that an offshore wind farm has never before been built in this country ******  so that, although several top politicians, including President Obama******* and former Massachusetts governor, Deval Patrick, have been in favor of the project, the actual implementation process, even without repeated, obstructive lawsuits, has been complicated by its steep learning curve. And, finally, some say Cape Wind was a lousy deal from the get-go. That took the wind out of my sails! (Temporarily)

Know something, though?  If there will be more pro-Cape Wind rallies, I’ll show up. Even though I have deep concerns about its shaky business practices. Because, know what? Sometimes, even when you do know all about those pesky, complicated/complicating asterisks, sometimes you have to just show up in support of a very simple and uncomplicated and non-asterisked idea. Like Peace. Like Justice. Like Truth. Like, in this case, supporting renewable energy. Sometimes you just have to show up.

* My late father, a Republican and a long-time, loyal employee of the General Electric Company, the world’s biggest nuclear equipment supplier, was nevertheless a huge supporter of Cape Wind. (He was also a sailor and a thrifty Yankee who, no doubt, saw the value of harnessing free, just-going-to-waste wind power.) So I went in his honor, too.

** Especially one of the Koch brothers, who also happens to own several homes on the Cape.

*** Like the late Teddy Kennedy

**** Yet Mass Audubon has endorsed the project.

***** Who claim they need an unobstructed view of Nantucket Sound to welcome the morning sun. Yet their land on Martha’s Vineyard does not face Nantucket Sound. So while, in principle, I am in sympathy with this Native American tribe, whose name, indeed, means greeting the morning sun, that I also know they’re trying to open a casino I find confusing!

****** Meanwhile, while all the Cape Wind dithering goes on, another wind farm off the coast of nearby Rhode Island has recently been approved!

******* The same week as Boston’s Cape Wind rally, President Obama vetoed the Keystone XL Pipeline, definitely NOT a renewable energy project, and so made climate change history by saying “No! Keep fossil fuel in the ground. Unburned.”

Join the Conversation


  1. Dear Patricia,

    Hi, there, Patricia, my so, so very precious and dearest white friend and sister! What an inspiring and informative blog post article this is of yours, as well as your other very astute and brilliant ones, sister! Patricia, your support of the proposed wind farm, Cape Wind, sounds like you are right on and on point with this proposal being a great ideas and it being a great use of a natural resource, sisterfriend! I, too, think that it would be very beneficial and helpful for there to be more wind farms across our very special, beloved, and blessed country, and throughout the world Patricia! I just so love and I am so, so very impressed with your great activism, and your steadfast, ardent, and avid concerns for very relevant issues that are very much indeed important to advocate for in bettering our society, country, and world. You are doing such endeavors in all of your outreach and activism, and you are very much indeed my very inspiration, Patricia! What a powerful Christian witness you do in all of your spectacular activism, sister, like as an empowering white anti-racist ally and activist in your fantastic allyship and activism in solidarity as the wondrously wonderful white woman who you are very much indeed For Always, sisterfriend!!!!!! Patricia, you are just the very greatest and the very best, and you inspire this black woman and help me and inspire me to be an even better Christian and woman of our Good God, as you are a good woman of our Good God Spirit!!!!!! Thank-you, thank-you, thank-you so, so very profusely For Always, precious white sisterfriend!!!!! Patricia, may all of your days be so, so very especially blessed, precious white sister!!!!!! My friend, you are For Always such an eternal blessing and a greatly immense and immeasurable joy to me with the very gift and blessing of you, and reading and responding joyfully to your very grand blog post articles, just as you are to your other very appreciative and grateful readers!!!!!!! Thank-you, Patricia, thank-you For Always!!!!!!!

    Very Warmly and Sincerely For Always, my white sister, Patricia, with Peace and Love and Blessings and Even More Blessings For Always, my white sisterfriend.,

    Your Christian lesbian black sisterfriend For Always in solidarity, Sherry Gordon

  2. Well done, Patricia. Your thoughts on why to support the wind farm–even through the doubts–was very informative! Thank you.

  3. Altogether, doing the right thing just has too many asterisks, you know? I’ve often been trapped by them. My father would ask in the 1970’s, “just how are we to get out of Vietnam without terrible consequences to Americans and Vietnamese?” I didn’t know, and told him that that wasn’t my responsibility; I don’t have to have all the answers when I protest that the policies of the government are wrong. But I was affected by some of the same doubts my father expressed.

    I have some of the same confusion about pacifism in general; how can our government just abandon someplace where it has been meddling; the consequences would very likely be a bloodbath? Of course, the answer is that the American Empire shouldn’t have been interfering militarily and arrogantly in the first place; we have to work on helping rather than taking, thinking about human consequences — don’t arm dictators! But the asterisks always give me pause.

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