Here we are at last, fellow citizens, a week before Armageddon — or Deliverance, depending on your point of view. Next Tuesday, will our future be determined by LIVs (low information voters), NIVs (no information voters) and MIVs (misinformation voters)? Will our president-elect be someone who represents the many or the few?
The joys and hopes, the griefs and anxieties of the people of this age, especially those who are poor or in any way afflicted, these too are the joys and hopes, the griefs and anxieties of the followers of Christ. Indeed, nothing genuinely human fails to raise an echo in their hearts. For theirs is a community composed of men and women.
I owe Dave Schweig a response. After the Aurora, Colo. movie house massacre in late July, I challenged the NRA, and all Second Amendment champions, to acknowledge the responsibility that goes with their freedom to own — and in more and more states to carry — guns. Rights and responsibilities go hand in hand, I wrote, but gun advocates don't seem to feel any responsibility to do anything that might make it harder for madmen to acquire small arsenals and shoot up public places [Maximum freedom, minimal responsibility, Viewpoints, Aug. 1].
Every house has a history — Oak Park and River Forest houses more than most. And some of those houses occasionally cough up a historical surprise. That's what happened to 12-year-old Julia Meister last April as she rummaged through one of those classic window-seat storage benches you find in so many Oak Park homes. She had just moved upstairs to the attic bedroom (another common feature of old Oak Park houses) and decided to explore a little.
Functioning in spite of fear is a good baseline definition of courage. We all live with fear. We all have to function in spite of it. Many of our fears are vague or exaggerated and, fortunately, rarely materialize. Waking in the wee hours, I am no stranger to the anxieties that surround my brain, creeping toward me, trying to claim control of my consciousness.
And then there were eight. Neil Armstrong's death last week sent me into a tailspin of memories and musings about the space program, which played a central role in my 1960s' childhood, filling me with optimism and pride and, most of all, wonder.