I wasn’t quite sure how to start this week’s edition except to just come out with it. The week of April 30, 2018 will be the final print edition of Deer In Headlines. After 10 years, it’s time for me to focus on something new. I greatly appreciate the loyalty of my readers and the opposing views and letters of praise I’ve received over the years. If just one person each week looked at the world just a little differently and appreciated anything new, I’ve accomplished my goal.
I started this column to offer my readers a look at subjects from all sides, rarely giving a hint of my personal opinion, although it was evident when I chose for it to be. But today clear, logical viewpoints no longer have value. People seem to listen only to blowhards, the ignorant, and people who would rather spew hate than kindness. That’s why I have decided to focus on more positive projects, out of the public eye.
This is not a decision I’ve come to lightly, in fact, I have waivered numerous times in my deliberations about it. Over the last decade I’ve offered a look at politics, religion, education, science, family, and even given you a glimpse into my personal life as I cared for my parents.
We live in volatile times and some have argued that now is when we need a clearer, more rational voice in the media. They may be right, but mine is simply not loud enough to be heard above all the noise of anger, fear, and ignorance out there.
There is a lot of negativity out there and I have worked hard to bring you thoughtful content. I’ve always hoped you’d take away something from the effort, even if, especially if, you didn’t agree with me.
I’ve always said I like to surround myself with smart people who disagree with me because it means I am forced to examine my own convictions, and I hope I’ve done that for you from time to time. If you’ve enjoyed my work, thank you. I appreciate your time and loyalty. If you haven’t, then I’m not sure why you’re even reading this, but, thank you anyway.
For more than 500 editions and in some 360,000 words, I have shared my observations of the world around us. I’ve found that most people are good and decent and try to do their best to improve the world around them. I’ve also seen some ugly things in researching these pieces, information I kind of wish I had never learned. As they say, ignorance is bliss, but I’m afraid I don’t operate that way.
I will continue my work quietly, however, in the background, making a difference by other means. I serve on charitable boards of directors, care for my family, and work to affect change in more concrete ways.
The world is a mess and our country is too, but I can’t do anything about it in the rail column of a newspaper because the people who could make a difference simply don’t want to listen. Still, as ugly as it can seem at times, the world is also a beautiful place, one of a kind – a spinning ball of life making its way around the sun, year after year, as our galaxy moves through the vast emptiness of space.
It was here millions of years before us, and it’ll be here millions of years after we’ve gone. We are but renters and if I were the landlord, I wouldn’t give back the deposit. But that’s a discussion for another time.
As you can see, I’m not done with my opinions quite yet and there are two editions to go. Over the next couple of weeks, I’ll be summing up the last decade in a look back at a few of my predictions for politics, news makers, and various other areas I’ve touched on over the years. I hope you’ll join me in these last editions, and thank you again.
Gery L. Deer is an independent journalist and copysmith based in Jamestown, Ohio. More at gerydeer.com.