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Advertise on the Tentacle

August 14, 2014

Take a Break

Patricia A. Kelly

What a summer! In the past few weeks alone in our region, an 8-year-old and two 3-year-old children have been murdered by random gun shots, some while standing on the street, others sleeping in their beds.


Our president has been forced to give up his determination to back off of the world stage by renewing bombing in Iraq, as ISIS has been overrunning the country and brutalizing innocent people in unimaginable ways.


As bad as things remain in Syria, we don’t even think of those thousands of lost and suffering people. Other atrocities have taken center stage. Turkey is begging for money to assist with their care.


Russia under Vladimir Putin has annexed the Crimea back into Russia and is both massing weaponry on the border and funding rebellion in the Ukraine, including providing the rocket that blew up a civilian Malaysian airliner flying overhead. Now civilian airliners avoid Ukrainian airspace and take the long way around.


My mom, a barometer of world events, has given her signal response: “Anyone would be crazy to fly in an airplane right now.” She’s actually more worried about contracting Ebola than being blown up, and she has a point.


Speaking of Ebola, several African countries are in states of emergency in response to the worst outbreak in modern times. Physicians, nurses and priests, along with many citizens of the region, have died, with the death toll approaching 1,000.


Israel and Hamas have renewed their open conflict, after Hamas, an organization absolutely committed to Israel’s destruction, began lobbing rockets over the border between them. Most civilian deaths have occurred in Gaza, where Hamas has forced them to remain in the line of fire rather than providing them with shelters. Now that Israel has cleared the under-the-border tunnels that facilitated attacks, a 5-day truce has been declared.  Let’s hope it holds.


Two hundred Nigerian schoolgirls, captured by terrorists from their school in April, remain missing. A recent overhead sighting suggests they’re still huddled together in the jungle, still draped in robes and headscarves reminding all of their forced conversion to Islam, and their removal from the education system in their country.


Here again, we’ve recently lost beloved public figures to untimely suicide or drug overdose, just as the number of young local people dying from heroin is on the rise.


I’m sorry to bring all this up, as a beautiful local summer winds down, and we take one last run to the beach, fill up on fresh tomatoes and corn, and shop tax-free for school clothes and school supplies.


We’re so fortunate here to avoid direct connection with most horrendous world events, but they take a toll nevertheless.


My suggestion: Turn off the news, and maybe even your computer.  Get ready for the Great Frederick Fair. Eat some watermelon. Jump in a pool. Take a walk in the park. Just let it go for one more week before you dust off those primary election signs and put them back in the yard.


Take a break.


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