Letters to the Editor

Remembering the good things

Do you remember what happened to so-and-so?

Usually, we remember the last thing that happens to a person. Unfortunately, the final episode in our life may not be the most representative of our entire life.

Benjamin Franklin once said, “It takes many good deeds to build a good reputation, but only one bad one to lose it.” So very right but is also sad. We tend to forget all the good things people do and dwell on when they showed a bit of their flawed humanity at the end of their life. Joe Paterno is a case in point. Coach Paterno got embroiled in the child abuse controversy at Penn State University. I think his culpability was overblown, yet even he said he wished he had done more to expose it. They dwelt on one experience in his life and ignored all he had done for that university and college sports in general and took down his statue. It has become fashionable these days to narrow-cast on some character flaws of our national heroes, and negate all that they have given to this country. In Washington, D.C., a church where George Washington attended took down a plaque about him, because it bothered some people.

Maybe we should focus on what Joe Pa did, and not what he didn’t do. If we as imperfect people, would remember the good things about others and not just the bad, it would be a better world in which to live.

Ken Barnes, Mechanicsville, Va.

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