Our View

Cheers and Jeers: Crack open a good book

By From page A10 | June 27, 2014

We offer our cheers and jeers for local newsmakers as we look back over the previous week.

CHEERS to the Davis Reads project, organized by Krystyna von Henneberg and Joan Tuss of the Stephens Branch Library. The book they’ve chosen, “Thank You for Your Service” by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist David Finkel, follows several wounded U.S. veterans home from Iraq, as they struggle to overcome the physical and psychological trauma of battle.

“War, Finkel shows us, is not glamorous,” von Henneberg wrote. “Wars have a hidden half-life all their own. Not everyone survives the battle, and not everyone survives the homecoming, either.“ It’s an important perspective for civilians, to give us a glimpse into the costs of sending men to fight for us.

Sad JEERS (and tears) to the end of an era. The Davis chapter of the League of Women Voters, plagued by years of declining membership, has decided to close up shop. For 57 years, the League was a Davis institution, advocating for local causes, hosting candidate debates and, most importantly, encouraging political engagement all over town.

In this age of declining voter turnout, big-money campaigns and partisan rage, groups like the League are needed more than ever. It’s a rough day for democracy.

CHEERS to Jessie Catacutan — in his eighth year coaching Little League — whose description of why he coaches reminds us all of what’s wonderful about sports: “I keep coming back to what I truly believe — with passion and energy — that the ballfield is a special place for kids to create memories, to meet or improve friendships and learn so many life lessons: working hard, being part of a team, can’t be selfish, acceptable behavior, develop, grow/mature, learn to win with humility and lose with dignity (while) having fun.”

CHEERS to the crowds packing bars and restaurants around the city to cheer on Team USA in this year’s World Cup. Even in a soccer town like Davis, there was a time when the event barely registered among sports fans. Now people are arranging their schedules around it.

For anyone who feels a sick day coming on, the Americans’ next game is at 1 p.m. Tuesday against Belgium, as the knockout rounds get going.

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