In May we honor high school graduates; a time for celebration and for change. Perhaps the Class of 2021 will be going to college or tech school; or out into the world to find work or a career. Graduates: this is a time for being aware of who you are and for becoming you. Please remember Joseph Campbell’s sage advice: “Follow your bliss!” If you do what you love, you will do it well and you will be happy. Always let kindness be your guide and go out there and create the world you want to live in.
In May we also celebrate Mothers Day. The past year has been a tough one for all of us—mothers especially. Many mothers (and others) added new job descriptions, such as teacher and caretaker, to their already long to-do lists.
Memorial Day has become a meaningful, national day of remembrance, honoring those who have served our country. Especially for the fallen angels who lost their lives, observing a day of gratitude and acknowledgement is the right thing to do, and from the heart. The Village of Questa and many volunteers and sponsors have created a most iconic event, now in its 17th year, over that special weekend: The Veterans’ Healing Field of Honor (see story, p. 16). Many of the bikers who will attend the 39th Annual Red River Memorial Day Motorcycle Rally are veterans and have reported that it’s an especially moving experience for them (see story, p. 6).
Reflecting on our country’s conflicts and how they shaped history makes me wonder: will we always be beset by war? Will our species evolve past competition and into communication and cooperation? It can happen! The ancients knew what to embrace and what to let go of. Moral and ethical standards can still be taught, and the great books survive. The Bible, with its message of love and unity, continues to be number one on the charts, the greatest international bestseller of all time.
Still, after over 2,000 years, if the news and mass media are any indication, the trajectory moves farther from these ancient truths and toward fear and violence. Is it true? According to the media, our primitive instincts continue to run the show. Therefore, media literacy should be a critical part of youth education, to expand their awareness of what they are being exposed to—how media can manipulate and affect us emotionally and culturally. Don’t believe everything you see on the screen! For a wonderful look at media literacy, for folks at any age, visit https://criticalmediaproject.org/
Does the chaos we see on the news apply to our small villages? Not so much. What makes us more immune than big cities is community connection and care. We have dynamic committed groups like the Vida Del Norte Coalition, with passionate and lofty aims for our youth, some of which came together on April 23, to celebrate Earth Day and clean up the Questa Municipal Park, and engage in discussions for building a new skate park there. We are excited that Taos Behavioral Health has opened an office in Questa, at the Cisneros Youth Center, and is making a huge difference through their SUCCESS Program. (see story, p. 10).
Drugs, crime, domestic violence, and hunger are an inherent part of places of poverty. The North Central Food Pantry shares food with everyone. For those who are desperately poor, a life of crime might be prevented if food is offered by the generosity of their community. The Questa Economic Development Fund and this newspaper are working to raise Questa out of poverty as an instrument for connection and sharing of information. Through our efforts we bring jobs, health, entrepreneurial opportunities, and creativity—a better way of life—for all our people, young and old.
The Questa Del Rio News aims to be a “good news newspaper.” We try to follow the Solutions Journalism model, to report what works, rather than complain and leave it at that. Every month in these pages you will see what the communities of northern Taos County are doing to make this corner of the world a better place for our children.
Please enjoy this beautiful month of May and let us hear from you!
From All the Folks at the Questa Del Rio News
Media Literacy is a 21st century approach to education. It provides a framework to access, analyze, evaluate, create and participate with messages in a variety of forms — from print to video to the Internet. Media literacy builds an understanding of the role of media in society as well as essential skills of inquiry and self-expression necessary for citizens of a democracy.– Center for Media Literacy