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   NOVEMBER 16TH, 2020


Thanksgiving is upon us. It is the start of the Christmas season. Soon, the streets will be bustling with shoppers as they acquire a “little bit of this and a little bit of that.”  Families will gather in celebration of the year gone by and the year to come.  Memories will be recalled and new ones will be made.  Christmas trees will go up and those favorite ornaments from years past will once again appear from the recesses of the basement, garage or attic.

People will gather to rejoice, get re-acquainted and share the “glow.” Gifts will be opened and we will toast each other and our good fortune.

Sounds like the trailer for a Christmas themed movie.  I personally like the Christmas Vacation movie with Chevy Chase.  Anything that could go wrong does.

The crazy cousin shows up in his motor home. The cat eats the lights and starts a fire. The goofy switches cause the roof lights to work alternatively. The boss gives his gift, the “Fruit of the Month club” membership, much to the chagrin of all concerned.

That’s the movie version.

Now the reality. Our lives aren’t a movie. They are in turmoil.  A cruel disease has ravaged our populous. Divisiveness among our politicians and our people further fragments our society.  People are afraid of one another and for good reason. To that, I’m sure that we can all agree.

Thanksgiving was created to unify our peoples. To come together and give thanks for the bounty that this country has bestowed upon us.  This is not a political statement. Have we always gotten it right? Nope, we haven’t.  Have some suffered while others have prospered? The short answer is “Yes.”

Can we all do better? Yes, we can.

Your right to disagree with your government and to dissent without persecution or prosecution is something to be thankful for.  Your right to publish your opinion and pursue happiness in all its forms is something to be thankful for. Your right to express your opinion at the ballot box is something to be thankful for.

If we, as Americans, have to sacrifice for the common good then it is our right, no, it is our responsibility to do so.  I hate wearing a mask. I hate having my freedom restricted. I hate seeing fear in the eyes of people on our streets. There is no magic cure right around the corner. What there is perseverance, and knowing that we, as Americans, will overcome this scourge just like we have overcome so many others. Be it war time or peace time our “colors never run.” Let’s be thankful for that.  We will lead the world out of this, hand in hand and be better for it.

Please stay abreast of the Governors edicts and mandates. The administrative staff at City Hall is working tirelessly to ensure that we are in compliance with the latest directives to keep you safe.  Take advantage of the ability to use our electronic portals to pay your utility bills.  You can find out the latest information by either visiting the City of Eaton Rapids web page or the City of Eaton Rapids Facebook page.

City Council meetings are now being simulcast via Facebook live.  This is one of the missing components that makes government more accessible to the people that we serve. You can tune in on the 2nd and 4th Mondays of each month at 7:00 pm.

As we move into the Christmas season many of you have asked about the plans for the various activities.  We will continuously update the website and the Facebook page with the decisions that are made.

I came to Eaton Rapids as a member of the newly formed Eaton Rapids Police Department in December of 1981. There were 10 of us including Michael Seeley.  Mike proudly served his adopted community for 32 years. We came in together and retired together.  Mike passed away recently. He will be missed by all.  A true servant to the public and a friend and mentor to all.

I wish you all Peace.  I recognize that this is one of the most difficult times that our country has faced in many years.  We will work together and lean on each other.  Find the things in your heart that you are truly “Thank full” for and if you do, then Thanksgiving is still there.