"The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas" is a 1973 plotless, short, descriptive work of philosophical fiction, popularly classified as a short story, by Ursula K. Le Guin. With deliberately both vague and vivid descriptions, the narrator depicts a summer festival in the utopian city of Omelas, whose prosperity depends on the perpetual misery of a single child.
I forgot. I saved the provenance of my meditation (see above) and then I became quite eloquent in my exegesis and forgot to save any more until Safari reminded me painfully that it was all in vain.
I was saying that we are all blessed, so fortunate to be who we are and where we are, to enjoy life in freedom, to be safe, secure, fed, sheltered and cared for, even loved - some of us, not all. Not all. The good fortune of a few of us depends on the misery of countless others. Once in a while we feel slightly guilty and we make a charitable donation as a gift to the gods or whomever, to placate them. We are not placating them but ourselves, trying to ease the guilt and the heavy burden of gratitude. But very very few of us sell all that we have and give to the poor. And even if we did, we argue, how far would that go? So we continue to keep the child in the basement to ensure our own safety and happiness.
I am so blessed. I have this day entered the Country of Age, the as yet uncharted region beyond old age that some of us old-timers are beginning to explore in greater numbers than ever before. I still have my marbles, most of them, though I might get an argument for having been so stupid as to fall on a footstool and rip open my leg. I am healthy despite that leg. I’m still here.
With any luck I’ll keep on keeping on for a while longer.