Oh, what topics we have to editorialize about to get 2008 off to a good start. We certainly have options, what with the presidential nominating process beginning today and all the attendant problems with the contemporary electoral system, the continued devolution of the national media, the dire state of our infrastructure and the continued need for an involved, concerned citizenry in local politics and the local economy. Instead, perhaps, we’ll offer New Year’s resolutions for the community in the hope that they will inspire at least some small change in society. Here they are:
1. To be straightforward and sincere in our dealings with people, and to take others at their word with the expectation that their efforts are genuine.
2. To replace at least one car trip a week with either a walk or a bike ride.
3. To go out into nature — or at least visit a park — once a month or more.
4. To get familiar enough with an unknown neighbor to feel comfortable inviting him or her over for dinner.
5. To invest enough in our workforce so it can afford to live in our community, and to adjust rent and other costs of living to sustainable levels, especially as vacancies persist.
6. To learn something new about local history.
7. To devote at least a quarter — but hopefully more — of our spending to businesses based within our community.
8. To support local art and entertainment by listening to local bands, buying work from artists in our community and watching performances in our neighborhoods.
9. To vote, whether we think it makes a difference or not.
10. To work toward accepting the humanity of those around us and to accept the flaws and recognize the hidden strengths and beauty of everyone in society.