“The future is inherently a good thing, and we move into it one winter at a time. Things get better one winter at a time. So if you’re going to celebrate something, then have a drink on this: the world is, generally and on balance, a better place to live this year than it was last year.”
– Spider Jerusalem/Warren Ellis, Transmetropolitan
Despite the barely-semi-ironic ‘2016 is the worst year ever’ nonsense we’ve been spewing since Bowie died, and despite certain voting decisions that people have made that I personally disagree with, and despite the bloodshed and carnage of certain parts of our world, Spider Jerusalem hits the nail on the head.
Humans are incredible, and civilisation isn’t a state of existence but a journey.
Sometimes the journey’s unpleasant, but even if as individuals or groups we stumble occasionally, or meander from side to side like drunken idiots, or we falter because we don’t like the look of a particular landmark on the road ahead, or we just turn around and go back towards the places we really should be avoiding, humanity as a whole is still walking in the right direction.
Yes, the destination seems to be forever just over the horizon, a weird, golden glow of world peace and cultural enlightenment and technological harmony that we have a terrible feeling humanity will never reach, or at least that we’ll not live to see humanity reach. Why does it seem unachievable?
It’s because we keep redefining humanity’s end goal and barely even notice that we’ve just passed by where we said we were hoping to reach last year, last decade, last century.
There’s seven billion of us, and most of us are still walking towards that glow on the horizon.
Here’s to 2017.