Railroads came upon the scene back in 1830, but if you think this means their time has come and is about to go you’re making a mistake. The latest trains are fast, incredibly safe, extremely competitive with other forms of transport, environmentally friendly, and comfortable. At the ripe young age of 190 years, railroads are entering a new era of growth, and very possibly the industry’s best days are still to come.
Over the millennia, people have lived and died for it, married and betrayed for it. They’ve even killed for it. Yet now, when so many are suffering through financial hardships, a growing number of people refuse to touch it. Is cash about to give way to digital money? Are we entering an era where cash is becoming obsolete? A growing number of respected people are answering “yes” to both of these questions.
If all goes as planned, in just a few weeks, life will begin looking normal once again. Shuls will conduct regular minyanim. It may be possible to work and to shop without a mask. And it may even be possible to go to a baseball game. But don’t be fooled into thinking that we will emerge from this crisis stronger or even the same as before. We won’t - and major changes could lie directly ahead.
Hopefully, by the time you read this, the riots now wreaking havoc in dozens of US cities will be history. Tempers will have calmed, cities will have started rebuilding torched neighborhoods, and the legal system will be hard at work meting out justice for the horrific death of George Floyd, the African American whose death touched off the rioting. This is the best possible scenario. The worst case makes our current problems look like a picnic by comparison.
According to an old saying, “The more things change, the more they stay the same.” There’s a lot of wisdom in this observation, but it really needs updating because these days things aren’t staying the same. They are changing rapidly - and for the worse. A recent article in The New York Times is not only offensive but slanderous and bordering on anti-Semitic.