Russell Hampton
ClubRunner Mobile
Bulletin Editor
Al Philpotts
Meeting Responsibilities
Malec, Ray
Introduction of Visitors & Guests
Luncheon Treasurer
50/50 Draw
Sergeant-at-Arms (shared by service team)
Jan 13, 2021
The Kindness Project
Jan 20, 2021
Making our community and your business dementia friendly
Jan 27, 2021
View entire list
Download Files
Suggest a Speaker
Sunday January 10, 2021
My message this week has been the most challenging one in the last six months. After a great club meeting last week we were disgusted by what transpired on Wednesday in Washington D.C.- and since. They say life is a series of experiences, let me share a few of mine.
Too many people have forgotten or not learned the art of compromise. My way or the highway attitude has led us down this dangerous path. Everyone has their own ideas/opinions that SHOULD be respected. And we have developed those ideas through our own life experiences. We used to be able to debate issues and come to an agreement. Not now - why?
The pandemic has accelerated frustration, much of it I view is from the the lack of in-person interaction. I hear almost daily from customers who say that it is "strange" to be around people; they have grown used to keeping in the distance. Listening to people pre-pandemic or now it is always easier to hide behind our devices and falsely feel we have the only correct opinion. If someone disagrees and argues with you-just "unfriend" them. Discussion over. Please note I am not on various social media platforms. 1) I do not have the time, and 2) The people I hear on them seem to be always complaining and arguing about this person said this or that and seem mad whenever they refer to their social media.  Who needs that?
Sadly, this attitude has been the way Washington D.C. has been operating for far too long. Rotary helped open my eyes twenty years ago when I had several one-on-one lunch meetings with with a former member, also a former Congressman. To summarize his observations: in the State House he could vote on items the way his constituents wanted him to vote. But in D.C. he was told to vote the party line or they would make sure he was defeated in the next election. How does that advance the country? After 3 terms he did not see the point of continuing as a Congressman if he could not effect change through meaningful debate. As someone I never voted for because he was from the "other" party - it taught me a valuable lesson not to judge a person by his political affiliation. We are all Americans and need to start working together.
Our destiny should be to leave our country and world a better place when we depart than when we were born. I truly believe that 99% of us are sensible and have good intentions - I'm in the trenches each day and see how everyday folks are more inclusive and respectful of each other than when I started 40 years ago in the retail trade. We, as Rotarians can lead the way by applying THE FOUR-WAY TEST: Of the things we think, say or do:
1. Is it the TRUTH?
2. Is it FAIR to all concerned?
4. Will it be BENEFICIAL to all concerned?
Keep in mind:
Tomorrow January 11TH at 7PM is the LV Anti-Trafficking Week event "Not For Sale". Help show support to our RAGAS committee and register at the link on our ClubRunner home page.
Tuesday January 12TH at 7PM District 7430 is hosting International Service Part 1: Basics of International Service and how Covid-19 has affected what we do. Now is the chance for those who are interested in this important aspect of Rotary, to learn about opportunities and changes and how YOU can help participate or start your own project. We need members to learn more and bring the knowledge gained to help the Jamaica-Unitas Project possibly pivot to a different direction. Keep in mind Hopeton Clennon is temporarily leading the committee but we will need someone to take over. Could that be you?
Last week's meeting was a great presentation (as always) by member Kamran Afshar concerning the economy and the effects the pandemic has had. Kamran guided us through fascinating statistics of economic performance from the past 20 years to present. The pandemic has presented many anomalies to figure out, but as we know the likelihood of higher taxes will result. The Lehigh Valley Business Sentiment Index dropped/crashed in March but has shown some improvement. Let's hope with a New Year and vaccinations beginning, he sees improvement in activity in the second half of 2021. Thank you Kamran for keeping us informed on the economy and for hosting a great Q&A session after.
This weeks meeting will celebrate the hard work of many members who made Taste & Tunes 2020 Dessert Edition a huge success. Our main beneficiary-Northeast Community Center (NECC) will be presented with a check from the proceeds and NECC Executive Director Paula Johnson will give us a virtual tour of their food pantry that will benefit from our check. And Cindy Glick will be hosting some of the recent Bethlehem Rotary Foundation Grant recipients who will tell us how our grant helped their organization. Please join us and celebrate the work we do to help better our community.
Yours in Rotary service,
President Pete Mickolay