It seems that we still need to finalize some of the elections in this country, still need to see a bit clearer into the future. And there are still difficult times ahead.
No matter who our elected officials are, we still need to keep an eye on them; remind them that they work for us, our taxes pay their salaries. And there is much work to be done.
To find out what bills are proposed in the upcoming state legislature and how the votes go, see www.wvlegislature.gov.
On the federal level, you can find out way more than you might want to know about how and on what our elected representatives are voting at www.govtrack.us/congress/votes.
I don’t know the statistics in this election, but in the past, it has turned out that only about half of the citizens in this country are registered to vote and only about half of those actually do vote. It looks like a higher turnout than usual this year, but there are still many voices that are not being used, many voices that we haven’t heard.
We need to seek out and recognize our common ground, find what worries and concerns each of us regardless of politics. Each of us cares about our families, our homes, the food that we eat, the air that we breathe and the water that we drink. And we each recognize the need for access to affordable healthcare.
These are good areas to start with – to pay attention to what bills come up in the various congress and houses in state and at the federal level and to let those who work for us know how we need them to vote.
Those of you who read my op-ed each month probably have a good idea of how I feel about the various challenges that face us in our communities, states, nation and the world. And the biggest challenge seems to be how to get people to think, to pay attention, to decide for themselves what is the truth. And then to do something about it.
I don’t really know what else to say here today, how to convey my hopes and fears for the future; how to say in some different way what I have been saying for a while.
We are all tired right now and need a bit of a rest. But then we need to get back up and pay attention. The earth and the people need us to care, to do something, to speak up.
I guess that I would just like to end with this thought – in the words of an old song –
“What the world needs now is love, sweet love;
It's the only thing that there's just too little of
What the world needs now is love, sweet love,
No not just for some but for everyone.”
Because I believe that if everyone had love for everyone else and the planet, if everyone prayed for peace, if everyone reached out even just a little – we could solve the problems and this is why I write.
Who would be left to hate and to make war if each of us spread love and work for peace?
In these difficult times, be kind, smile, be brave and take responsibility.