October 2007 San Francisco – Fleet Week thoughts…

4 Oct

A thought popped into my head today, October 4th, the first day of Fleet Week 2007 and my 32nd birthday: Why are we still having Fleet Week? Why do we continue to have air shows at all? In today’s world, when we complain about military budgets and our dependence on fossil fuels, why are we still having events all around the country, all around the world, where military personnel and various crafts and vessels are transported from place to place, flying and sailing around causing much air and noise pollution? It just doesn’t make any sense to me.

I brought this up to a friend I was with at the time this thought formed in my head and she said things like ‘it’s fun, like a pep rally” and “it shows support for the troups who are risking their lives, whether you agree with it all or not” and “it makes the military personell happy, they get to have some fun”. We didn’t even get into tourism or the local economy but naturally it’s an event that has an impact on both.

But I can’t help thinking that our priorities are still a bit messed up. Sure, there’s fun to be had, but this is hardly the only event that locals, tourists or troups would enjoy. The government could show support for the pilots etc but doing other things like raising their salaries, giving them more time off with their families.

I am an all or nothing person when it comes to some things, but certainly not lifestyle or cultural shifts. Balance is important. But should we be so wasteful just because we think it’s fun to see to see five jets fly in perfect unison? If we, as a society, are going to use jetfuel, shouldn’t we save it for visiting family and friends and other cultures? Something that’s truly enriching to our lives?

Just some things to think about…

http://fleetweek.us/fleetweek

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