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Somewhere in the week after Nov. 3, in our country and our community, we will reach a deciding moment in our collective lives when a series of major choices will be required. The choice could be, and should be, more than turn left or right, or even just stay the course. It should be a conscious effort to build a new future or to try and claw our way back to a place we felt better regardless of the impact, or more likely find some middle ground.

The primary decisions will be on several levels:

Nationally, we will need to make a post-election decision on how to support the President and other leaders. This will require all of us to make up our minds on if and how the divisions in our country can be healed or if they will be widened. Hopefully, we will not be subject to violence that is brewing in other places in our country. We should all be on guard for deep seated anger and tribal or racial animus and have de-escalation strategies ready. If protests are needed they should be organized to ensure they are peaceful and not designed to force escalation or create injury and damage.

Locally, our community will start a yearlong process of changing our governance. We have already seen some efforts to turn it into an “us” against “them” battle. Each of us will play a part in this process. The choices fall into several categories: collectively looking for solutions, fighting for power and control or, for some, total ambivalence. We know instinctively what we should do, but each of us must decide what we will do.

Community culture and our reaction to COVID-19 is also a personal and deeply important series of decisions for each of us and our families. Our quality of life and our ability to build a “new normal” depends on us making informed and selfless choices. Each of us must decide to invest in our collective well-being or not. The approach needs to include all elements of our collective health and safety; our youth and education; food security; senior protection and security, as well as, supporting our local economy and businesses. It is all important to all of us. It impacts not only our community’s quality of life, but also our individual well-being in everything from mental health to our property values.

So, when the hullabaloo subsides and we feel like we can put it all out of our mind and in the rear view mirror, it is time to get to work.

Wally Krutz is a resident of Windsor.

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