On March 12, America hunkered down to combat the COVID-19 virus. All of us began living an interior life that has become a 10-month long blur of days.
I am 74 years old and full of bucket-list plans and not designed to tread water as a lifestyle. However, I am also a patriot, so when asked to sacrifice, I do.
For example, I shut down a big calculating part of my brain that envisions numerous travel destinations, yet unvisited and prized projects not started. It was hard, but I learned to direct energies into expanding cooking, cleaning and exercise routines, and benefitted.
Unfortunately, many Americans followed the president, who betrayed the people by undermining his own prevention program. As of Dec. 2, 2020, more than 271,000 have died, and some still claim it’s a hoax, even as an intubation tube is put in them.
Hanukah, the festival of lights, celebrates freedom from tyranny. In a democratic society like America, citizens must share common values and employ self-discipline.
A majority of us sacrificed for the public good by embracing health experts’ advice. The rest apparently did not, and caused the pandemic to spin out of control.
I pray that President-elect Joe Biden will be able to pull the nation together and heal us over time. We, as a people, must regain our unity so that we are again a light unto each other and the world.
Therefore, when we light the Hanukah candles this year, my great hope is that the current tribalism tearing us apart will dim and the virus brought under control.
Arnold Heller is chair of Atlanta – Ra’anana Sister City Committee, and author of “Dues: The Coming of Allie Cohen.”