Welcome From The Chief Editor

WOW! Where did 2012 go? It doesn’t seem all that long ago that we were welcoming in 2012. Now here we are already preparing for yet another holiday season. In keeping with tradition (well, tradition during my tenure as the magazine’s editor, at least), we once again deliver the annual holiday gift guide. This year, I provide 10 gift suggestions, Meemaw provides 10 more, and ms_meme jumps into the gift suggestion fray with six more of her own.

Among all the hustling shoppers and busy schedules during this time of year, the words “peace on Earth” and “goodwill towards men” are often heard, uttered and bantered about. Maybe I’m a bit naive, coupled with a bit of an utopian view, but wouldn’t it be nice if we heard, uttered and bantered about these terms all throughout the rest of the year? Wouldn’t it be nice if we (meaning all of us) could make those words become reality throughout the year, every year?

As of late 2011 (the latest figures I can find), there are 24 countries directly affected by ongoing wars, with over half (13, to be exact) affected by protracted wars of 10 years or more, and seven of those countries having experienced wars in excess of 30 years – and still counting. I’m sure for those living in these two dozen countries, the terms “peace on Earth” and “goodwill towards men” are just hollow words and a distant, dim dream.

Fueled by the selfish and wanton desires of so-called “power barons” who want to impose their will and their beliefs on others, there will be no “peace on Earth” or “goodwill toward men” during this winter holiday season in at least those two dozen countries. I cannot understand the intense desire some people have to rule over those who are weaker. I cannot understand why some feel the need to limit and oppress their people.

I can easily imagine a world without wars, a world without oppression. I can easily imagine a world where freedom reigns – freedom of thought, freedom of movement, freedom of association, freedom to express one’s own mind, freedom to learn, freedom for each individual to live their lives harmoniously. Just like the John Lennon song, “Imagine,” I can imagine all these things, as well as the things expressed in the song.

So, for this holiday season, I’d like to wish each and every one of you not only peace, prosperity, happiness and serenity … but also freedom. If each of us works towards achieving that naive, utopian dream in our own little corner of the world, who knows what may happen. It may even catch on and spread out of control. We should be so lucky. Happy holidays!