I know. It is 2016. We had better start commemorating. I am buying The Revolution Papers. I have no idea why? I guess that I don’t want to miss out. I could go to several lectures on this and that. Bobby Hamilton and the ‘gaffer,’ Alan Marsh, took us all on tour in 1991-92. I have touched the bullet holes a few times since then. Of course, I have been to the Somme and have noted the unbelievable sacrifice of our fallen ancestors, very movingly denoted by the protestant and catholic students who found their relatives on the Thiepval Memorial.
2016. What does it really mean? Everyday, I am amazed by the technology that now exists. Laser printed kidney blueprints, MS defeating chemotherapy and apps that allow you to listen to personal testimony as you walk by monuments of historical significance. We live in an unbelievable world, a world that we didn’t imagine in the 1970’s, 1980’s and 1990’s; a fitter world, where everyone is engaging in personal fitness challenges.
Is 2016 the year when we start to look forward as a society? A big election looms. Can we respect our respective commemorations and move on? 2016 is worlds apart from the society that existed in 1966, universes away from 1916. We should celebrate our society’s progression between 1998 and 2016. We should reflect on what we have learned. We should imagine what we can achieve. We can’t revisit 1916, 1926, 1966, 1976, 1986 or 1996. It is time to start planning for 2026 and 2036. That is what 2016 means to me. I want to respectfully commemorate all that was and move on.
2016 is also my brother’s 50th Birthday.