Note: This post was begun about six months ago — just after the national elections, although I have no record of the exact date. Just as obviously, I never finished it. Words at the time were difficult, because there were so many divisive and disheartening words being spoken and written all around me.
I simply chose not to add to the noise.
But, now, it seems appropriate to write again. So here I go. Read — or not.
But, hopefully, we can all once again find the will to speak respectfully to one another, to work for a better future here at home and around the world. It’s time; if not for our time, then for our children’s time and for their children’s time. I choose hope.
The need is great, perhaps never greater.
My words, from December 2016:
I have been reading for the past several days of Michelle Obama’s comments to Oprah Winfrey about hope, and how she believes that it has somehow left the American scene because Donald Trump won the election and her husband is soon to leave office.
I beg to differ.
Hope, it seems to me, does not hang around the neck of any one person; and hopes are not dashed because another person arrives on the scene. I have no doubt that Barack Obama used the word “hope” before he was elected president as a beacon for what he believed was best. “Hope and change” became campaign rhetoric, to be sure, but the hope was real.
During this last campaign, new players on the scene spoke about their visions, and their plans, their hopes and their dreams, their programs and platforms. Each of us made a choice, based on our own experiences and our own hopes. Millions of different hopes.
And to say that there is now no hope in the country? Balderdash, Michelle; and shame on you for spouting such nonsense!
Hope is alive and well in this country — and around the world. Look around you! Yesterday, I sat for at least 30 minutes in front of my computer, in awe at a live broadcast from the city square in old Yafo, Israel. The occasion? A tree lighting celebration, complete with a countdown in Hebrew, Christmas carols in English, and several different languages as “background music.” The wonder of it all.
If that can happen in Israel . . . need I say more?
My thoughts, at the beginning of June 2017:
Times change, but time changes little.
These past weeks the news has been hopeful at times, and then dreadful — from Manchester, from London, from Mali and Nigeria, from Syria and Iraq, from Egypt and Afghanistan; and, yes, from our own country. The news is unsettling. There is no question that we live in troubled times. We Americans are still divided on too many topics. The rhetoric continues.
We are still, in many ways, acting like children. And it’s time to grow up.
Senseless acts are perpetrated around the globe. They are random, and far too frequent. This year to date there have been 538 terrorist attacks, with 3,640 fatalities. I am outraged, in large part by the lack of outrage; and I am horrified at the suggestion that this has become the new normal.
Lack of agreement on too many topics continues here at home. We have problems to solve, and it’s time to roll up our sleeves and get back to work to find solutions.
I don’t have the answers. But I am certain of one thing, perhaps only one thing. The more we continue to fight one another, the less chance we have of returning to the “old normal” where we were able to live in our land or to travel abroad without fear, to work together to solve problems, and to look forward to a future full of promise.
I refuse to believe that that hope was false, that it is an impossible dream.
I am not so naive as to believe I will ever see an entire world at peace. I once hoped for that. But I still hold out hope that Americans and all citizens of the world will commit to seeking more peaceful solutions most of the time.
Isn’t that the way adults are supposed to act? Is it so much to ask?