The Soapbox: Daily Herald editors offer brief thoughts on suburban topics in the news.
This week's Clippable Quote
"Those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything." -- Irish playwright George Bernard Shaw
The dramatic undoing of the lights
As suburban residents start working to take down the holiday lights adorning their homes, we learn that suburban governments and attractions have to do the same -- and it may take months, such as Six Flags Great America and Morton Arboretum. Sure, life goes on, but it's still sad that we won't see lights around town to punch up the darkness.
Baby, it's cold outside
And winter's only just begun. Subzero temps are due next week. Take care, bundle up and use common sense.
Meanwhile, at the hospital in town
We hope that Arlington Heights officials who are so reticent about enforcing the county's COVID-19 safeguards will not be as reticent about finding a place for heart attack patients when the beds at Northwest Community are filled.
Congratulations to Gareth Mann on becoming the city of Elgin's newest poet laureate. In her role, Mann will write and present poems for local events, including public holiday gatherings, graduations, dedications. The Elgin Poet Laureate Project was a great idea when it began in 2018. It's nice to see it continue.
House fire season
With all the residential fires in the news lately, it's a good time to remind everyone to check their smoke alarms, make sure your chimneys are working properly and take the proper precautions with power cords and space heaters.
Testing, testing, testing
Omicron's assault has resulted in an overwhelming demand for COVID tests, and some agencies are trying to capitalize, with less than ideal results. It may be frustrating to face long waits at a pharmacy or state-sponsored site, but you may be even more frustrated if you try someplace sketchy. Find the most reliable at https://dph.illinois.gov/covid19/testing.html
And, of course ...
If you're still not fully vaccinated, you have a good chance of not finding yourself in need of a test. Give yourself a leg up on the disease and help protect everyone else. Get vaccinated.
Changes at the top
John Koziol, who retired as Palatine police chief in 2014, retired as Mount Prospect's chief after a four-year stint that earned him high praise this week from village leaders for helping transition to a new police station and building a new level of leadership within the ranks. Our best wishes go to him and to his successor Michael Eterno.
A life well-lived
The term "America's sweetheart" gets thrown around a lot in Hollywood, but few would deny it applied to Betty White, who died Dec. 31, just three weeks shy of her 100th birthday. She was honored as versatile, kind, warm and a fount of good humor. Oh, for more like her.
Farewell to a legend
And, Hollywood lost another legend this week with the death of actor Sidney Poitier, the first Black man to win a best actor Oscar. He broke barriers and created a number of indelible characters, including his powerful role as Virgil Tibbs in "In the Heat of the Night." If you haven't seen it, make sure you do.