The lady doth protest too much, methinks. — William Shakespeare
Is there such a thing as "bad activism"? I'm asking because I'm seeing a lot of criticism of the folks who are protesting the Memphis Zoo's encroachment onto the Greensward at Overton Park.
Exactly seven years ago this week, I wrote a column decrying a proposal by city engineers to turn the Overton Park Greensward into an 18-foot-deep "detention basin" designed to stop flooding in Midtown. The engineers claimed we'd hardly notice the football-field-sized bowl. "Except," I wrote then, "when it rains hard, at which time, users of Overton Park would probably notice a large, 18-foot-deep lake in the Greensward. Or afterward, a large, muddy, trash-filled depression."
(such a sky and such a sun
i never knew and neither did you
and everybody never breathed
quite so many kinds of yes) — e. e. cummings
The Flyer offices are on the river bluff in downtown Memphis. Some days, when the weather is nice, I get to work early, wander over to the Bluff Walk, and watch the sunlight hit the bridges and the river and Arkansas beyond. I contemplate the joggers and cyclists in shady Tom Lee Park below, the low mist on the water, the cars and trucks on the bridges, the clean, white FedEx planes splitting the blue, making the turn over downtown on their way to the airport. It clears my head. It makes me feel good about my city ...