The Chinese saying, “May you live in interesting times,” is considered to be a curse. Our current times certainly are interesting, and sometimes do feel like a curse, or perhaps a time to reckon with curses, like when an airplane is shot down in the Ukraine, or when yet another young black man is shot by a cop. Sometimes though, there are blessings, like when a helicopter makes food drops and rescues refugees in the mountains of Iraq. As citizens, we have serious choices to make with regards to what happens on our planet, because caring about what happens in the world – and in our personal worlds – is part of our job as humans. That’s why this blog is called, “Don’t Just Stand There. Do Something,” and sub-titled, “A Guide for Activism in Hopeful Times.” Now, I know that given some of what appears above the fold in major newspapers and 24/7 on cable news, it’s a little hard to be hopeful. But frankly, I prefer hope to despair or indifference, which are useless. Hope keeps us keeping on in the face of war, inhumane acts, and natural disasters. These times call upon us to contribute to conversations and take actions that allow us to have an impact, be it by completely diving into a cause, by joining a march, by starting an agency or working for one, by donating money to a nonprofit, or by signing petitions. The Internet, one of the blessings of our times, allows us to take most of these actions without sacrifice. It keeps us informed and presents us with choices as to how we can respond to the big issues, and how we can enrich our lives by being part of the solution. The Kabbalah says that when we give and receive equally, we are helping to keep the world in balance. Currently, the world is out of balance, but happily, we can help to correct that. The following entries will offer you some chances to give your opinion, and to receive gratitude.