Today many people around the world are marking the 72nd anniversary of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights. This year’s theme is “Recover Better – Stand Up for Human Rights”, reaffirming the importance of human rights in re-building the world we want, the need for global solidarity as well as our interconnectedness and shared humanity.
Today also begins the celebration of Hanukkah, the festival of light. And shortly after the eight days of Hanukkah, the winter solstice will turn the earth more and more toward the light. One of my favorite Hanukkah traditions is of the shamash, the ninth candle in the menorah. It is the helper candle used to light the other eight candles. After a hard year we all need a little light in the darkness. But today, let us realize that we also need to be the light for others, to stand up for the rights of those oppressed and help each other shine. And that includes saying thank you to each shamash who lights your way. Happy Hanukkah and here’s my thanks to each of you for, as Howard Zinn expresses so well, being a light of hope for a better world, Betsy