Circuit Breaker

My friend in Singapore tells me they call their quarantine efforts the “Circuit Breaker.” I think that is far more accurate and positive than calling it a “Lockdown,” which sounds like prison. I’m going to adopt their term, which keeps the focus on the public good.

The virus is a real test for the United States. Political propaganda has worn at this nation for decades, attributing anything associated with the public good to “Socialism,” and anything attributed to greed and personal accumulation “Freedom.” Of course, neither are true.

Nor is it true that this is a lockdown. It is a circuit breaker.

James B. Hunt Jr. Library

(Raleigh, NC, USA) I’m to old to have had this wonderful library when I was a student at North Carolina State University. And I don’t live nearby anymore. But when I did, I often enjoyed visiting, and spending some time there, even if I didn’t accomplish anything. I must have paid $50/month just to park close to it. I’ve been a Friends of the Library member for years, and often suggested they give us a parking pass (nope!). Oh well, my mind and soul found it money well spent.

Still closed during COVID-19 restrictions, here is a link to a 360 degree tour. It reminds me that the United States can still produce beautiful architecture and non-retail spaces. Sometimes.

If you’re a fan of these kind of things, you can learn all about it by following the links you’ll find on the 360 tour page. (The blue chairs along the window wall are more comfortable than they appear).

https://www.lib.ncsu.edu/huntlibrary/hunt-360-tour

The Snowy Day

This US stamp honors the 1962 book “The Snowy Day.” I remember our 3rd grade class reading it. It was probably the only story book I’d ever seen with a black kid in it. They had started busing back then, so our classes were integrated. As I recall, it only made us all want to play in the snow. No one felt their rights were trampled on, their culture appropriated, or their flag disrespected…but what do a bunch of kids know, right?

People have since complained about cultural appropriation, and even expressed anger over the fact that the author was a white Jewish man. I think a white person writing about a black child’s amazement at a snow day in 1962 wasn’t racist, but revolutionary. Compare “The Snowy Day” to 1899’s “Little Black Sambo,” and decide which makes a more positive contribution to humanity. I’m glad the US Postal Service chose to honor it. And I hope we have many more years of the USPS identifying and celebrating important events and people, in the form of postage stamps.