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Well, 2012 is just about done and what a year it’s been.

I’m not going to do what’s usually done at this time of year, which is, to look back at all of the major events that made it such a compelling year. Instead, I’m going to look to the future and the promise of 2013.

So, here’s my optimistic Wish List for 2013:

#1: In 2013, for starters, I wish we all will set resolutions we can keep to improve ourselves, our lives and the world around us.

#2: In 2013, I hope we can begin to better cherish our families, our children and the sanctity of life, and recognize we were all put here for a most important purpose… to love and to be loved.

#3: In 2013, since the world didn’t end on the 21st, I hope we don’t begin another end of world countdown.

#4: I wish Democrats and Republicans can finally realize that our suffering country is much more important than their petty squabbles, private perks, or corporate backers.

#5: In 2013, I hope the media and our community’s culture will evolve past the point where the celebration of a 16 year-old African American Olympic Champion won’t devolve into a discussion on how she chooses to wear her hair.

#6: I wish professional sports will come up with an effective system of available, around-the-clock counseling for every team and player, coach, executive and qualified veteran.

#7: In 2013, I wish the musical legacy of Whitney Houston will continue to live on and keep us singing and dancing.

#8: I hope that deadly and nonsensical ‘Stand Your Ground’ laws, like the ones in Florida, are erased from the law books.

#9: I hope sensible gun control legislation is enacted that protects citizens and children while still respecting our individual rights.

#10: I wish the ongoing conflict between Israel Palestine, and other conflicts in the “the Middle East,” can finally come to a peaceful conclusion.

#11: In 2013, I also hope and pray the long and horrific conflict in the Democratic Republic of the Congo will finally come to a peaceful conclusion.

#12: I wish the families and friends of the victims of the Newtown, CT massacre will continue living, loving and knowing their loved ones are still with them as long as they keep their memories alive, God bless them.

And, for 2013, I’ll end with number 13.

I wish that all of you live each day with faith in your spirit, love in your heart, and joy in your soul.

I’ll close with this wonderful Ralph Waldo Emerson quote:

   “Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year.”