EDITORIAL: How Will You View 2015? Is the Glass Half Empty or Half Full?

Photo courtesy of AP

Photo courtesy of AP

In the last few editorials, I have talked about the aftermath of what has taken place with the recent police shootings. I listened to the funeral proceedings of slain NYPD Officer Wenjian Liu that took place on 1/4/15. I paid special attention to what his immediate family members had to say.

It was just as heart-wretching as when the family of  NYPD Officer Rafael Ramos spoke at his funeral on 12/27/14.

Even with the devastating loss of their loved ones, there was a hope of optimism that came through in their speeches. Something kept drawing me to look at the memorial of floral arrangements and sentiments left at the site where those two Officers were gunned down.

There were people from all walks of life in the neighborhood and outside of the State who came to pay their respects. Besides the families of those Officers I took note of perfect strangers comforting the Police who stood guard at that memorial. Even Eric Garner’s daughter expressed her sympathy and left a wreath.

These are the pictures that make me feel optimistic about the future. In spite of what’s going on, there are neighborhoods where people of all ethnic backgrounds live together peacefully.

I remember as a child going to New York in 1964 during the World’s Fair, and we would stop by and to visit relatives who lived in high rise buildings in Queens. They were by no means
“rich” but I never felt uncomfortable going there. I don’t know when the dynamics changed. It was a building in a neighborhood where all ethnic groups existed peacefully. I can’t remember seeing any gang activity or garbage or graffiti being prevalent.

I grew up in a neighborhood in Perth Amboy where I can tell you the names of all the families from blocks away, even the streets behind us and the streets surrounding us. Everyone knew who you were and if you misbehaved, trust me, by the time you got home, your parents knew about it.

Maybe that’s what’s missing today. Don’t get me wrong, technology is wonderful, but’s it’s kind of nuts when you are texting  someone practically sitting next to you or across from you.

Technology is wonderful in one special way. I have a good friend (Jeff B.) who lives in Arizona who loves to send me YouTube Videos of things that might be of interest to me.

The last batch had to do with Flashmobs. These are the kind of Flashmob videos that make you tear-up with joy. My favorite ones take place in large indoor malls during the Christmas Season. Yes, I said Christmas.

All of a sudden out of nowhere you would hear one voice singing a Christmas Carol. Then all of a sudden other voices join in, some near the original singer, then all of a sudden you hear voices joining in on escalators, etc., and on different levels of the mall.

The most moving part of these videos is watching the expressions on the unsuspecting shoppers. Many of them will whip out their phones to take photos/videos of the event and sometimes will join in on the singing.

It is my hope that these Flashmobs that bring hope and optimism would suddenly appear at some of the disrespectful, disruptive protests going on.

They need a dose of the message of these Flashmobs. Whether you are religious or not, it would be hard pressed not to have a smile on your face or a little joy in your heart after witnessing these videos.

Watching and listening to the families of Ramos and Liu give me hope. They make me see the glass is half full. C.M.

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MON. Jan 22
• City Council, Caucus,
4:30 p.m.
City Hall, High St.

WED. Jan 24
• City Council, Regular,
7 p.m.
City Hall, High St.

THURS. Jan 25
• Historic Preservation Commission
7 p.m.
City Hall, High St.

MON. Jan 29
• Special Public Meeting, RE: Discussion of Rezoning Ordinance
6 p.m.
City Hall, High St.

 

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South Amboy Calendar

WED. Jan. 31
• City Council, Regular,
7 p.m.
City Hall, N. Broadway

WED. Feb. 7
• City Council, Business,
6 p.m.
City Hall, N. Broadway

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