Thumbs up: To the candidates who have filed petitions to run for public office, and to those who will file before the deadline passes Wednesday. Every two years, hundreds of local offices are up for election. Public participation is important at the ballot box, but it’s just as important on the ballot. Our local libraries, parks, school districts, townships and cities need qualified people who are not afraid to contribute their time and expertise to make local governments better. Thanks to those who have stepped forward to run, as well as to those who serve now.
Thumbs down: To the continuing fade of the Chicago Bears this season. The Bears lost, 21-13, to the rival Green Bay Packers at Soldier Field on Sunday, allowing the Packers to clinch the division. The loss was the Bears’ sixth in a row to the Packers, and their fifth in their past six games. Afterward, sidelined linebacker Brian Urlacher complained about the Soldier Field fans, and teammate Lance Briggs backed him up. The Bears still could make the playoffs if they win their next two games and get some help, but the complaints about the fans are an alarming sign. Fans aren’t the ones out there losing football games.
Thumbs up: To the many volunteers who helped The Salvation Army wrap and distribute gifts for local families in need Tuesday. Greg Billings, Salvation Army food pantry coordinator, estimated that between 50 and 75 volunteers helped this year. One volunteer, Emma, 11, has been volunteering with The Salvation Army for the past three years. “It makes my Christmas a lot better,” Emma said. “It makes me feel like I did something. I just didn’t receive. I gave back.” Isn’t that what Christmas is all about?
Thumbs up: To the bell-ringers who volunteer their time for The Salvation Army’s red kettle drive. Locally, The Salvation Army is relying on 120 or so volunteers this holiday season to help them raise $70,000. Besides individuals, the Kishwaukee Sunrise Rotary Club, DeKalb Elks Lodge, DeKalb Kiwanis group, DeKalb Rotary Club, Kishwaukee Kiwanis Group, Sycamore Rotary Club, Sycamore Kiwanis Group and a Brownie troop all are volunteering for the kettle drive.
It’s not all about the money, though, according to Michael Cho, Salvation Army captain. “One of the big responsibilities is to share Christmas spirit so [other people] create spirit,” Cho said. “Donating is completely up to the people.”
Thumbs up: To Flippin Eggs and Feed’em Soup for hosting community holiday dinners. DeKalb County residents help the less fortunate in so many ways throughout the year, including through angel tree drives and dinner giveaways during the holiday season. It’s nice to know the lonely and the cash-strapped have a place to go for a nice holiday meal, too. Flippin Eggs, 831 S. Fourth St., DeKalb, will host a free meal from 4 to 7 p.m. Sunday. Feed’em Soup, 122 S. First St., DeKalb, will have its meal from 2 to 5 p.m. Tuesday.