And Here Is Hoping For Much Better Things For Our Niagara, Ontario Region. Creeps & Bullies Be Gone!
A New Year Message from Niagara At Large reporter and publisher Doug Draper, and from one of his Heroes
Posted December 31st, 2017 on Niagara At Large
Hours away from turning the calendar on a year where Trump darkened and demeaned the landscape of America, and where something similar darkened the landscape on the Niagara, Ontario side of the border with a cabal of the of municipal politicians, the likes of which we have never seen, I feel a growing resolve for something better in the air.
In 2018, American voters have mid-term elections that could wrestle the balance of power away from the cult of anti-science nihilists, neo-Nazis and greediest of the greedy that has become the once proud Republican Party of Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt, and could fast track the impeachment of the madman in the White House before – one way or the other – he destroys what’s left of life on our planet.
On the Canadian side of the border, we have provincial elections this coming June and municipal elections this coming October, giving voters across Ontario and this Niagara region the chance to boot out those who either ignore our concerns and interests or respond to them with arrogance and contempt, and to replace them with individuals more dedicated to serving the people who elect them with openness, honesty and respect.
We can see that kind of chance for the better in 2018 but it is not going to come easy. It is going to take people – and I mean all of us, not just some of us – paying more attention and getting more engaged in politics in our communities than many of us probably have in some time, and not just on voting day but in the many months leading up to the elections.
It is also going to take strength and courage because those who we are up against can be counted on – given their record to date – of using every bully tactic possible to beat us down and barn storm their way to another term of power.
We, as communities of people, have to make a resolution that for the sake of our future and the communities we live in, we are not going to let that happen.
Let’s all make a pledge together in this New Year that we are going to stand up to the bullies and be champions for change that sees good triumph over bad.
Niagara At Large will begin posting much more on the political mess that needs cleaning up in this region in the days, weeks and months ahead, so stay tuned on this news site for that.
In the meantime, please allow me to leave you with the following –
One of my favourite champions in the world was, believe it or not, an American boxer named Muhammad Ali, who could be as tough as he had to be to win, but who also a person of courage and principle, with a great capacity for social justice and generosity.
This passing holiday season I was in a book store – yes, a real bookstore – and I found a book that Muhammad Ali’s daughter Hana Ali put together of thoughts and recollections her father (who died in the spring of 2016) jotted down in notebooks over the years.
The book is called ‘The Soul of A Butterfly – Reflection On Life’s Journey’, and here are a few of Ali’s short writings from it I believe are worth embracing as we get ready to do battle with the darker forces in the New Year.
The first one is called ‘The Blessing’ and goes like this –
“A long time ago, I took a walk down a street in Harlem in New York City. I came upon a man who asked me for a dollar. He had asked a few other people before me, but they only passed him by without glancing his way.”
“I stopped and handed the man some money. As I began to turn away, he reached out and shook my hand. He looked me in the eyes and said, “I will bless you.” Now, I’m not saying that was God Himself. But how do we know that it wasn’t someone working for him, walking around in disguise, just to see what we would do?”
Then here is one called “Giving” that speaks to the kind of humility and generosity we need to see more often, not only in ourselves, but in those who hold public office.
“IF ALL THE good that I have accomplished in my lifetime were measured against my intentions, I suppose I would have failed. When a person has been blessed with a life as full and rich as mine, he can never give back enough.”
“Some people give in order to feel good about them. They see someone in need on their block and they pity him, so they hand him some change. Others give to receive praise and that praise is their reward, but the purity of their generosity is diminished because they received something for it. True giving happens when we give from our heart.”
Giving because you genuinely want to help a person or a worthy cause while remaining anonymous is true charity. That is the kind of giver I wanted to be … a giver from the heart.”
Thanks for all of your past support of Niagara At Large as an alternative voice for news and commentary by visiting it, subscribing to it and sharing it with your friends and associates on social media.
Let’s see what we can do to continue building Niagara At Large into the go-to site for news and commentary that is fearless and uncompromising. With growing support, we can do it!
Here is wishing all of us better times in 2018.
All the best, Doug Draper, reporter, publisher, Niagara At Large
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“A politician thinks of the next election. A leader thinks of the next generation.” – Bernie Sanders