Echoes of Elul, Day 14: Game Changer

By Glenn Silverman

Covid has changed everything. I’ve lived through the Cuban missile crisis,
the assassination of John Kennedy, civil rights unrest, Vietnam war protests on the home front, the assassinations of Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr, Watergate, and 9-11. They were all traumatic, but a global pandemic – that’s historic. And I fear humanity is ill-equipped to defeat it.

Sure, we can win some local battles, as we have recently with vaccines. But we, as a society, have managed to politicize a virus. And until we allow reason to trump fear and conspiracies, our fate, the future of the species is at best, speculative. And that’s assuming we can combat atmospheric carbon in time.

Pessimism need not be pervasive. We can learn to listen to each other and work toward reaching consensus. We can learn to balance individual freedom and social responsibility within the context of our Jewish faith. The global pandemic does not have to be a game changer. It is my hope that the New Year brings out the voices of reason and light for the road ahead.

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