Saturday, May 5, 2012

good news

When he was alive, my brother-in-law Tony once proposed to me that he would like to see a newspaper that contained the "good news." And, though I have no clear recollection, I can imagine I quoted former CBS news anchor Walter Cronkite who observed approximately, "News isn't about how many cats did not get up on the garage roof."

I could see Tony's point of view. He wasn't just some smarm-addict, but sometimes the bad news is so heavy and unremitting and the good news -- minus the come-to-Jesus optimists -- seems to be shrouded or held at bay. Sorrow is true, but joy is also true. Maybe it's best not to indulge in the sorrow-and-joy exercise, but to greet all circumstances with a joyful mind. But maybe that takes too much discipline. I don't know, but I did notice a couple of news stories today.

-- In Japan, there is some rejoicing in Tokyo streets as the last of that country's nuclear plants was shut down today for routine maintenance. Japan gets 30% of its electrical power from nuclear energy. Much work and many comforts flow from nuclear power, but the meltdown at the Fukushima plant last year has refocused interest in the dangers. The last time Japan operated without nuclear power was 1970. Activists say their movement is focusing on the future safety of the country's offspring. It remains to be seen whether a diminution of power sources -- a return to the pollution of coal and other fuel-source utilities -- is an acceptable trade-off.

-- In Nepal, an inexpensive cataract operation is helping to restore sight to tens of thousands of people in Nepal and Africa and other Asian countries. The operation is quick and easy and relatively cheap.

[Dr. Sanduk] Ruit recalled how he was moved by a woman who had given birth to a baby boy when she was blind but saw her son for the first time when he was 4-years-old after surgery in a field camp in eastern Nepal.
She looked at the child for a few moments, then jumped to grab him, wept tears of joy and began kissing him, Ruit said, eyes glinting with emotion.

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