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Wednesday, 28 May 2014 14:00

We just didn’t see it coming

Written by 

To the Editor:

“A date which will live in infamy.” 

I was just 6 years old and vividly recall the day, puzzling at my parents’ reactions to these words as they were broadcast nationwide. I don’t recall understanding the words, but days later sat between my parents in a theatre seeing President Roosevelt say them. There was no television, no Internet and certainly no cell phones. We relied on radio and movie-theatre news.  

The impact of that day on every American of all ages was enormous. Most Americans had no idea this was about to happen. From historians we have learned that there were indications of coming conflagration, not just in Europe but here for our homeland.  

We didn’t see it coming!  

Since that day we’ve suffered so many other dates which will live in infamy – war, natural catastrophe, and certainly 9-11 — but endless 24-7 news has anesthetized our infamy quotient! There truly are so many earth-shaking events piling one atop another. We do notice, but they quickly pass from our collective consciousness due to yet another incoming infamous event. Nothing seems to get done for any of them, no matter how tragic their impact here or abroad.

But note, we also have the infamy that is seldom talked about, not publicized, not at the top of the 24-7 talking head news and little mentioned by our leaders. We do hear from those who blare their usual naysaying of critically important issues that impact life as we know it.

Some pursue the plutocrat’s worldview, then noisily and hypocritically fret over potential expense that may be left to those who follow. Forward thinkers, instead, fret about what will be left to those who follow. What will become of the air, water, soil and necessary life-supporting components we leave the world for future generations? Money won’t matter if there’s nothing left to sustain life.

On this Memorial Day, I can only wonder if my two little great-grandsons will say in their future desolated world, “They who came before us, didn’t they see it coming?” 

Shirl Ches


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