Jewish World Review Feb 27, 2012/ 29 Shevat, 5772
Spare that post office
By Paul Greenberg
The list of those due to be executed is long and ominous. There were 179 names on it just here in
Those are just some of the post offices to be closed down as the
It's enough to make you wonder which will prove the last to go as one post office after another closes all across rural America. At one point, there were 3,653 on the list of endangered post offices nationwide, and each represents a disappearing way of life.
Why kill them off? Because the
Everybody knows, or should, that the national debt is swallowing the country's future. So the
But there's no putting a price on what will be lost. Consider the role of the post office in
The bulletin board of a small-town post office is crammed full of notices, schedules, ads, appeals, church drives, lost-and-founds. ... These post offices perform the role the town crier did in medieval times. But they offer more than a strictly utilitarian service. "If you take away our post office," to quote
And more. A town as small as
"We don't get to see people out in our community,"
Behind every one of these closings, there are real people who need more than just a place to pick up the mail; they need to see each other, exchange a few words, be neighbors. But where will they run into each other if the post office is gone?
Of course the
But there are other, better and bigger cuts the
Wanting government services but not wanting to pay for them is largely how we got into our current mess. Want to save the Alicias of the country? Then suggest how the
My suggestion: Instead of passing this burden. financial and emotional, on to small-town America, why not eliminate an expense that affects all of us, and not just every little crossroads town? Cut out Saturday mail delivery.
Couldn't we all live one more day without finding our mailboxes jammed full of the junk mail that makes the bills and the letter from Aunt Martha so hard to find?
How many more lost city folk looking for directions will have to be told to turn left "where the post office used to be" before all of us realize that not just motorists may lose their way? Sometimes a whole country can. As when it loses touch with its small-town roots.
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