By Bob Weaver
Here in the Village of Hur on this New Years Day we are surrounded by a vast forest of trees, meandering streams, fresh air, sky, stars, precipitous hills and sculpted landscapes.
The wonderment of creation, the basket of life, the awesome power of God, mystical and mostly unexplained.
We are surrounded by our family and our friends, with a sense of safety and peacefulness.
We have a thousand memories of those who came to this mountain country to toil, sacrifice and give birth to our generations, their sense of commitment and perseverance that gave us a community.
It is a place that gives us hope, when hope seems in short supply.
We are mostly a people of place, although such connection is rapidly fading.
Now, in the 21st century, life has moved toward virtual reality, consumed by Facebook, Twitter, Texting, gaming and hundreds of TV channels, and the Internet, less focused eye-to-eye, mouth-to-mouth.
The news cycle is focused on irrational tweets, not policy, by President Donald Trump. Many end with the word SAD.
The Trump administration is pretty psychotic, but his supporters seem to have irrationally normalized it.
Trump has declared he is good for media, how could they survive without his "entertaining" behavior.
Worse yet, the threat of the loss of long-held American values and a razor-edge march to yet another war.
Much of the media-connection seems to represent the self-absorption of a me-generation - entertaining us to death.
In America, we have a widely divided electorate, where civility is in short supply, the American Dream on short alert with the rise of "us against them."
We hope that our small county is a community of place, blooming where you're planted, often being forced to deal with the people and realities in one's environs, and in a greater sense learning to survive, participate, grow, forgive and live through those around us.
It requires rubbing elbows.
A virtual community is selfishly driven and holds little responsibility.
This past year we had some tragic moments, set-backs and falling-downs, the stuff of real life.
For some, there was a rude awakening that bad things happen to decent people.
This New Year's Day we find America politicians campaigning against the very problems they have created, using more divisive words and positions than ever before, reported immediately for public consumption.
Even giving working stiffs a little tax break that will expire, while giving themselves the big kitty, which will carry on.
Human beings are still ignoring intelligent thought (common sense), history and human decency, unable to build bridges of understanding.
We seem to be driven to destroy one another to get our way, a behavior mankind has entertained for thousands of years, usually in the name of justice, often in the name of a religion, but more frequently for power and money.
Our ability to recall history is muted by irrational desires.
We repeat the dreadful, again and again.
We are rattled daily by government-corporate media, frequently shaping our political views into directions that make no sense, while those in power have their merry way.
Yet, there are times when we rise above our selfish interests, redeeming the worst in us, rare moments when we surpass all expectations, a moment that we could genuinely be pleased with ourselves.
We must savor those moments and cling to them.
They are moments that give us hope.
Surely we aspire for a better world, a hope that is seen in the untainted eyes of children who surround us.
This New Year's Day, here in the Village of Hur, we are still a community connected one to the other and rooted in the sod, holding on, holding on ...