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  • Publisher's Statement

Healing From the Past

See the December 2021 Publisher's Statement below.

The last month of the year always finds us reflecting on the past twelve months and promising to do better as of January 1st of the following year. We promise to start that business finally, tackle that unfinished project, lose those unwanted pounds, and vow to live our lives more enthusiastically and authentically.

Unfortunately, most of us fall off before the end of the first month, but every year, we make our New Year’s resolutions in good faith that we will follow through this time.

I love the feeling of closure and starting anew that this time of year brings. After putting away the holiday decor and returning to work, a sense of anticipation for the new year grows. But it’s primarily the putting away of the past that feels good.

This letting go of the past can be good for us, but often it can be avoidance, and this issue addresses some critical “history” that we (well, some of us) as a country are attempting to avoid.

In America, we aren’t making any new resolutions or reflecting thoughtfully on the past. Some of us are boycotting and plotting to stop accurate historical reflections by banning the 1619 Project and Critical Race Theory, even though most don’t even understand those things.

We have articles dealing with the truth of the past and the present in this issue. Samuel E. Adams writes a delightful memory of a childhood debate between his six-year-old self and his mom over the existence of Santa Claus. Still, later Sam brings us a critical look at how the fear of facing the truth of America’s history is hurting our progress in his piece, The Mis-Education of White Folks.

Also, in Kindred: My Search for Myself, Sandra McCollum, who is white, deals with finding the truth of her history through a DNA search. She discovers among her ancestors one of the first enslaved Africans to land on the American shore in 1619.

It is fascinating to witness how learning about the truth of your past can be freeing, even enhancing. This enhancement can happen for all of us as a country if we deal accurately with the past. With honest truth-telling, we can begin to heal.

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