When my dad had Alzheimer’s disease near the end of his life, I would update him on current events. Upon hearing about the Columbia space shuttle disaster, he, like most of us, reacted with silence as he processed what I had just described.

Dad earnestly explained that no astute politician would ever mess with Social Security. And as a young boy watching him fill our 1957 Ford Fairlane gas tank for 25 cents per gallon, I wonder how he’d react to me spending $40 to gas up my Honda Civic. Some things just weren’t believable.

I can only imagine explaining a coup attempt and the aftermath on our federal government to Dad. Watching it on TV wouldn’t be enough. It took several viewings for me to grasp 9/11.

These “new normal” events, once rare, are happening in quicker succession. They deprive us of simple pleasures and require new habits like wearing face masks and social distancing. Sadly, they’ve rendered cordial political chats between friends almost extinct as well.

Expecting solutions from governmental leaders might seem naive, but government is the only game in town. Joe Biden’s team has, so far, exhibited a welcome, measured response to the post-election mayhem. Shouldn’t we at least give them a chance?

We gave Donald Trump four years.

Jim Newton

Itasca, Illinois

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