The Please and Pleas for Our New Year – A Few Days Late

By January 7th, 2022

Blog No 138

January 8, 2022


By Mack W. Borgen

Author, The Writings of a Lifetime (2021); Dead Serious and Lighthearted – The Memorable Words of Modern America (Three Volumes) (2018-2019); and The Relevance of Reason – The Hard Facts and Real Data about the State of Current America (2 Volumes) (2013). As Advertised in The New York Review of Books and Recipient of Eight National Book Awards

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NOTE TO MY READERS: This Blog was to be posted on New Year’s Eve. However, God intervened where I live — with record-breaking snow; thousands of downed, drought-dry trees; and the loss of all power and Internet for nearly two weeks. As I now post this, with the power (and heat) finally restored to my office, it is tempting to digress into a diatribe about our need to address climate change. But, I think I will stay with my original writing — The Please and Pleas for Our New Year. 

The Please and 10 Pleas for America’s New Year

It is a New Year. And that is a good thing.

I confess, both with some sorrow and some trepidation, that I am not a deeply religious person – at least in the traditional sense. Thus, I am not competent – and it certainly is not my place – to offer up a prayer for 2022, our New Year.

Possibly like you, I also confess that I have more ideas than answers. But it is hoped that what is offered below might help us all a bit – as a people and as a nation.

This list of my Please and Pleas for Our Country’s New Year is offered humbly. But possibly, these ideas and modest suggestions may help make this year better; may make things a little easier; and may make us all a bit happier.

Again, these are just ideas; modest suggestions. They are my offered Please and Pleas for our new year.

1. When in doubt, let us try to do the right thing. It’s sometimes hard. It’s sometimes costly. But it is always better. No more cutting in line. No more rounding the truth. No more cheating, dodging, denying, and ducking.

2. Let us start rejecting the dangerous ethos spoken by Michael Douglas’ Wall Street that “greed is good” – for in both the short and the long run, greed is not good. The world need not be viewed as a zero-sum game and sharing is almost always better.

3. Let us recognize, sadly but without fear, that our country is in a bad place. Our anger has grown so thick that reason is not breaking through. This must change.

4. Let us try to start our sentences withPlease” and end them with Thank You.” Words do matter, and even the minor kindnesses of “please” and “thank you” can echo in our ears all day long.

5. Let us find comfort in knowing that we have many friends – some, maybe even most, of whom we have not met yet.

6. Let us, as voters, demand decency and honesty as threshold requirements for election to public office. Many of us have spent years interviewing and employing people. We always demanded decency and honesty as prerequisites to even their most basic consideration. We have also, almost always, expected fair, but firm, accountability. It is time that these standards be made a part of our political system as well.

7. Let us breathe more deeply and lighten up more often. Sometimes, let us remember e.e. cummings’ famous admonition to laugh at everything but the circus.” For what it is worth, I think he also said that we should “eat drink and be merry, for tomorrow there’s more.” 

8. Let us have the courage to speak up with courteous resolve when we hear silly speak or see cruel actions. One of reasons for this is because in America lately, the sidelines have become too crowded; dangerously too crowded.

9. If you have time, please read (or re-read, as the case may be) my Blog No. 99. It was written more than two years ago. It is entitled “A Beg for Humility and The Phrase That Could Save America.” Just go to my website at . Then just hit “Blog Archive” and scroll down to May 2019.

10. Lastly, let us work hard and laugh often — for there is both much to do and much to enjoy. Sometimes that may not be true. I know that. But a close friend of mine recently reminded me of the power of choosing. Thus, as often as we are able, maybe we should sometimes just choose to believe — even the choosing of enjoyment alone can sometimes help us through tough times.

Bonus Idea (or should I call it, a Booster Idea?)

Next year, let there be no more covid variants. I promise that I am not complaining, but enough now. Science and medicine have gotten my attention, but we are ready to move on.

And so, as Walter Cronkite used to say a couple of generations ago,

“And that’s the way it is.”

Thank you, my friends and my readers.

And as for next year?

Well, let us first see how we do this year.

My Best Wishes and Happy New Year to All!

Books authored by Mack BorgenOrder Copies of National Award-Winning Books

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