Rabbi Robert L. Kravitz, D.D. is known Valley-wide for his more than three decades of support for civil and human rights, and the positive efforts of law enforcement.

goodbye 2020

I’m exhausted. Too much COVID-19. Too much garbage news. Too much election 2020 shenanigans. Too much yelling and arguing and disagreeing about reality and facts.

If one were a “real” alien looking down on our planet, what would it look like? Oceans heating up and skies covered with soot and smoke. Icebergs floating into islands. Empty streets in major cities. Hospitals looking like military bases with tents everywhere.

Strange what a virus can do if we don’t work to stop its advances. Strange what we are doing to each other. Strange what the planet will respond to and how it will react.

So, our lives today are filled with “too much” and “strange.”

It’s almost as if living were impossible without challenges and fighting over everything. In a world like ours today, what is the end game? Who will come out the winner, if there is one? Why do we humans keep fighting about money and resources?

If we are to answer any of these questions, we need to assess who WE are and what we truly believe in. Is it that we are pursuers of peace? Do we want freedom? Will democracy fulfill our wishes?

To accomplish any of this we need to become more civil and civilized. Loose the screaming, flag waving and gun-toting. Abandon the inability to sit down and talk with one another. Delete our yearning to one-up the other person.

Remember how to share. Remember that there is the common good. Remember what it is like to help another. Remember the necessity to be kind. Remember what it is like to “love your neighbor as yourself.” And not just during the holiday toy drives.

Our world is dramatically changing minute to minute. Our interactions need to be allowed to expand and work for the betterment of us all. Our pain and suffering should not be exacerbated by single-issue foci. Our planet can return to the beautiful blue sphere the astronauts tell us about.

All we have to do is listen, respond with dignity and honor, and realize that we are all tired and hurting. To change from a me-too focus to a we-too focus. To be open to other’s views, and if we must disagree, to do it civilly. Change will continue, and we must also — to remain HUMAN beings. Things to think about as we enter a New Year. Not too much to hope for, is it?

Be well and be safe.

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