I am trying NOT to read the news today (oh boy). I want to start the new year on a positive note, but this is not an easy assignment. Already my smartphone has popped up with "breaking news" (new open carry gun law in Texas). Already a cousin in Israel has posted on Facebook about another terrorist attack in Tel Aviv resulting in people being killed and wounded. Already. Already. Already. Enough already! We live in a terrible world - I know!
But I don't want to start the year this way. I truly want to focus on the beautiful and good things in our world. I want to celebrate those people who do good every day, and those who choose to spend their time doing good for others. I want to celebrate the people who go to the island of Lesbos, Greece to help refugees fleeing lives of fear and terror and death. I want to celebrate people who feed the hungry, who care for the sick, who help people in need. I want to celebrate the people who take the time and the responsibility to work hard for our rights and freedoms. And there are a lot of you.
The media tend to focus on the horrible. Sometimes we see stories about the good. I would like to see every news medium - newspapers, on-line outlets, TV news programs - have one segment or section every day dedicated to the good things happening in our world. Tell those stories so we can have some hope, see some good, know that we are not alone. Give us the opportunity to feel joy, to feel the goodness of humanity, and to not be bathed in honor all day every day.
This is a beautiful blue planet. Too many of us cannot see the beauty because our lives are focused on survival. My wish for the new year is that every person on Earth would have the freedom and opportunity to breathe freely in beautiful places, free of fear, free of want, free of hate. This is certainly possible; unfortunately, it is not probable. Are we intelligent enough to change? Are we human enough to see ourselves as a society of sisters and brothers, and not groups of others?
Happy new year. We have a lot of work ahead.