They’re selling the building.
When I was getting ready to leave HGTV a few years back, the leaders kindly named our campus park after me. They planted Black-eyed Susans to line the walking path, and now, whenever I see these flowers, I have precious memories associated with them.
Those who purchased HGTV are now selling the whole property, and likely my “legacy” will be renamed for some new person or cause. I’d be lying if I said it didn’t bother me; wiping out my connection to the Packard Park makes me sad. It was a special place for me to walk, think, and just breathe.
But I wonder: what is a legacy, really? It can be many things, but I don’t believe any of them involve your name on a building or park. It’s your kids and grandkids, nieces and nephews with whom you spend time. It’s the money or time you contribute to an organization whose causes you are passionate about, that will live beyond you. It’s longtermism.
I learned this term recently as I read the latest exploits of Elon Musk getting his hands on Twitter. One of his outer circle advisors, a Scottish moral philosopher named William MacAskill, was mentioned in court filings over the proposed purchase. MacAskill wrote a recent bestseller, What We Owe Our Future, which describes our global need for longtermism, which is supporting causes focused on future generations. Not us. Those coming after us.
Ah. So now I have a word for why I wrote The Little Book of College Sobriety, as it helps to support millennials and Gen Z’s. Young adults are our future leaders, and those in recovery are honest, self-aware and choose to walk a mature path instead of the easy one. I try to do what I can today to support all our emerging generations, to offer my experience and hope, and to learn from them as I do. I know many of you do too.
I Want to Support You
I want to support what you are doing in the field of longtermism. Send me a few sentences describing your passion work in non-profit–where you are giving of your time, even an hour here or there, or donating financially to it (or both), and why it supports our future generations. It could be anything from climate ecology to children’s aid programs. You will be entered into a random drawing where I will give away four $250 gifts for charities chosen. A future newsletter may include your work. Please get them to me by December 1st, so I can donate during the holidays, and I will include your name in the giving. The organization must be a 50l (c) (3). Questions? Drop me a line at email@example.com.
Will we leave the planet a healthier, kinder, more compassionate place after we’re called to our Great Beyond? Yes, we can do that. Starting with today. Send me your passion projects!