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Change to some is a horrifying thought

By John Pawlak

When I was 12 years old, I contracted a nasty illness and was forced to stay in the house for nearly four weeks.  
My mother was a soap opera addict and having little else to do, I found myself watching “As the World Turns.”  
I hate to admit it, but it really was kind of like sucking on a nicotine stick.  So soothing.  So intoxicating. I could barely wait for tomorrow as I held my breath, waiting to find out what Lisa’s husband, Eldridge, would do when he found out about her affair with his brother Thomas.  The suspense was killing me!
Naw, not really. Creating true suspense is a lost art.  Most things in life are fairly predictable.  But of course, you knew I was going to say that.
It’s kind of like watching the news.  Each day brings another soap opera with the same bad actors, the same bad script and the same bad plot.  
What’s going on in Egypt?  What is President Obama commenting about what’s going on in Egypt?  What does the mayor of Rotorua, New Zealand think about Obama’s comments?  Is it true that the second cousin once removed of the mayor of Rotorua was arrested for drunk driving?
That’s why I find local news so interesting.  It’s so unpredictable.  For example, when the hotly contested issue regarding the legality of a citizen vote on the question of whether to reconstruct the municipal building on its original site at Ashley Pond had been decided (i.e. no election), one would have assumed that would have been the end of it.  Indeed, with Councilor Vincent Chiravalle’s acceptance of the ruling, it certainly seemed a closed issue.  
Chiravalle even conceded and said, “I accept the judge’s ruling but I still stand by my decision to allow the special election and I still feel it would have been better to litigate this matter after the special election.”   
Well, even a backhanded concession is better than none. But this got me thinking, a dangerous thing, especially when those thoughts find their way out of my mouth.  
There are more and more people in today’s political stream (of non-consciousness) that reject change, who view change as a bad thing.  Progress inherits a bad name and the word conservative takes on imagery of steadfast pride in the status-quo, whether or not the quo has the status one might be proud of.
And who’s to say that they’re wrong?  Was it really progress that women were given the right to vote?  Now, I did my research and it turns out that prior to women getting the vote, nuclear proliferation was not a problem in this world.  
I know, I know what you’re thinking, and maybe you’re right.  Maybe it’s not because we gave them the vote.  Maybe it’s because we let them start smoking.  Or maybe the combination of the two put the world over the edge.  
The next thing you know, we’re going to let them cut their hair short, drive cars, and even go to college.
Look, I like progressive mentality as much as the next, but can’t we put the brakes on for just a moment?  Do we really need to open our shores to poor huddled masses yearning to breathe free?  Do we really need a “perfect” union with domestic tranquility that promotes the general welfare?  And seriously, who really shot JR?
Enough change.  Enough progress! I’m lobbying the district to stop the new construction on the high school and rebuild the original building.  
And while we’re at it, let’s recognize the true value of Bathtub Row and rip out the bathtubs in the rest of the housing in Los Alamos.  Come to think of it, we didn’t have electricity and plumbing back then, did we?
I do love regressive mentalities.  They’re so refreshing in today’s annoying move-forward society.

John Pawlak
Los Alamos columnist