“Motherfucker, why do you let cancer exist??”
“What are you doing?” the man asked him.
“I’m throwing these starfish back into the sea,” the boy answered. “The tide’s gone out and they’ll cook in the sun if I don’t help them.”
“But there are miles and miles of beach and countless starfish in every mile,” said the man. “You can’t possibly make any difference!”
The boy listened politely, then picked up another starfish and tossed it into the surf.
“Made a difference to that one,” he said to the man.
“I mean that’s a cute answer and all,” said the man. “It would fit nicely in a Facebook meme shared by your religious aunty, or a motivational speech from the early nineties. But in the grand scheme of things you must surely understand that saving that one starfish is of no real significance? The tide will go out again tomorrow, and this beach will once again be lined with dying starfish just as it is now, among them quite likely our little friend you just rescued.”