Happy New Year, everyone! Good to see 2020 go? Us too. Seems we are right up there with Nostradamus on that count.

Last year at this time we wished you a Happy New Year and among those things we predicted would make it so was the warning to stay away from toxic people.

HA! Who knew we would all become potentially toxic people?

COVID-19 stormed the gates of the kingdom and drove us into virtual hiding.

Remember how the deniers became refuseniks by refusing to wear masks and breathed on the rest of us to make their point? Most got the message when they were barred from going anywhere without wearing one.

Object lessons work best and, for the most part, respect for one another’s health returned except inside and on the grounds of 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., Washington, D.C. where the virus ran rampant.

Remember how even the president of the United States learned COVID-19 was not a hoax? He made a speedy recovery thanks to a cocktail of medications which will one day be available to the rest of us should we become ill with the disease.

The year 2020 gave us COVID-19, and in its waning days it also gave us a vaccine which will one day eliminate it. Rightly so, the vaccine is first being administered to front line health care workers, nursing home residents and those who care for them.

We learned in these last days of 2020 that “waiting your turn” has no meaning and there really is such a thing as position and privilege when the vaccine was made available to members of the U.S. congress. Members from both sides of the aisle took advantage.

Baring their upper arms and smiling for the cameras was at least one member of Congress who had called COVID-19 a hoax and others who dragged their feet on a COVID-19 relief package.

But there they were, rushing to the front of the line when the COVID-19 vaccine arrived. They should have been last.

And why did some younger members of Congress get a vaccine when they can surely wait their turn with the rest of their generation.

This was the year we elected a new president and witnessed the outgoing president suffer an emotional breakdown which weakened the country before the eyes of the world.

This president has been as divisive a one as has ever taken the oath of office. His slow roll public breakdown, refusal to admit defeat, concede the election and transfer power has been painful to witness, frightening to watch and embarrassing.

He continues to entertain fantasy scenarios he acts upon in which he wins the election, sends his attorney on fool’s errands to the highest of courts and publicly discussed winning the presidency by invoking martial law.

There should be an intervention, use of the 25th Amendment but nothing will happen because the president is alone. He has no advisers, just people who fear him and say yes. What could happen in the days before inauguration is uncomfortable to contemplate.

An unstable leader of the free world and a fatal virus are excellent reasons why most of us cannot wait to show 2020 the door.

But before we do, let’s take time to fully absorb the year that was. And, as bad as it was, take our lessons from it.

That will take time and reflection to grasp the full extent of it. It will be different for each of us. So, let’s compare notes. Put it on the calendar and we’ll meet back here next year same place, same time. It will be a start. History will do the rest.

A veteran reporter and columnist, Barbara Christian has been covering Chagrin Falls since 1967 and is currently responsible for Chagrin Falls village events, government and school board news along with her weekly column "Window on Main Street."

(2) comments

yrausche

Great article Barb as usual. Following you since the 1980’s. Your words makes us think and give hope fir the future

joacchim

Great column, Barbara. My thoughts exactly - and it doesn't hurt that your comments ring true as well! Happy New Year!

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