EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA

November 5, 2012


The Eagle-Tribune

---- — CHEERS to those of you who will head out to the polls today and cast your votes. You are the backbone of a representative republic, people who care enough to follow the issues and elect those who will best serve our community interests. It is vital that we hold politicians’ feet to the fire, rewarding them with re-election when they serve well, removing them from office when they fail.

Benjamin Franklin, when asked what form of government delegates to the Constitutional Convention of 1787 had chosen, famously replied, “A republic, if you can keep it.” He was speaking to you, the voters.

CHEERS also to the legions of poll workers, largely volunteers, who check the voter lists, hand out the ballots and tally the results. Your work is vital to the functioning of Election Day and is greatly appreciated.

JEERS to the political advisors, consultants and ad agencies who have produced the most awful crop of political ads we’ve seen in years. If these ads are to be believed, we have selected the most degenerate, evil people imaginable to run for political office. Forget the Mayan apocalypse. It’s nothing compared to the misfortunes that will befall us if our elected leaders are as bad as their opponents’ ads say they are.

It is appalling that our political class holds the rest of us in such contempt thinking we are so stupid we will believe one word of these advertisements.

CHEERS to the Merrimack College hockey team for bringing some joy to the life of a very sick child. The Warriors participate in the “Team Impact” program, which matches kids with life-threatening illnesses with college teams to provide companionship and support.

Merrimack “drafted” Timmy Burke, 12, of South Boston, who is undergoing treatment for leukemia. Timmy’s cousin Devin Driscoll attends Merrimack, which sparked Timmy’s interest in the team. Timmy has a Merrimack team jersey and spends time with the players at practices and games. Timmy’s family believes the experience has been helpful to their son.

“It is unbelievable,” Timmy’s mother, Mary Burke, told sports editor Bill Burt. “Sure, he’s been to almost all of the home games and some practices. But what that team has done for Timmy, especially during some tough times, especially when he’s been on steroids. They put a smile on his face.”

Team members also participated in a Jimmy Fund walk wearing T-shirts with the name “Warrior Walkers,” a name Timmy suggested. They raised $8,000 to support cancer research.

The entire team took Timmy out to see the much anticipated Batman movie at its opening night midnight showing.

“That was the best,” Timmy told Burt. “That was a lot of fun. They knew I really wanted to see that movie. Some of the guys were tired and almost fell asleep. Not me. I was wide awake the entire movie.”

Fighting cancer isn’t easy. It’s a great help to feel like you’re not alone. That’s what the Merrimack hockey team is doing for Timmy Burke.

Well done, Warriors.