Our future depends on our character

When my husband’s youngest son lay in a coma, I asked the seasoned nurse in Intensive Care why some victims of severe head trauma recover and why others with less serious head injuries some times do not. What did she think was the most important factor in successful recovery?

Somewhat to my surprise, she answered, “Character.”

Character is essential for the civilizing of humanity. The criminal, the cowardly, the faithless and the barbaric are obstacles along the route to civilization. These people destroy the fabric of society woven with patience, courage and selflessness by people of character. People like our founding fathers and mothers, for example.

My husband and I are deeply gratified that our president, George W. Bush, is a man of character. Our future as a free country depends upon people like him. We are proud to have voted for him, for he is proving himself to be the president we thought he would become. His down-to-eart eloquence is that of a man of integrity, compassion and faith. Unlike his predecessor in the White House, George Bush will neither betray our trust at home or humiliate us abroad.

It is a dangerous luxury during peaceful times (and more perilous during war) to pretend we are beyond the need for God, above the protection of prayer. If this were true, we would not immediately turn to God when we are threatened, injured or afraid. A child struts in the daylight, forgetful or comtemptuous of comfort until night begins to fall. This does not mean the child is foolish to fear what may happen to him in the dark. It means he suddenly has sensed how small he really is, how vulnerable, and he turns to what he knows instinctively he can trush if the worst comes true.

May we all be people of character in the troubled times ahead.

SALLY HAYTON-KEEVA lives in Coupeville

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