Clip courtesy El Paso County, Texas/YouTube

Op-Ed: Happy New Year from County Judge Ricardo Samaniego

This past year was surely the embodiment of the good, the bad and the ugly; yet the plentiful good is what kept us together.

Many storms came our way and each one of them left their indelible footprint. Nonetheless, some of these assorted footprints are now filled with ‘the potential’ of embracing some incredibly beautiful lessons. Primarily, the importance of embracing a deeper sense of appreciation for every dimension of our God given lives. Our love for our precious families and friends should be magnified more so than ever.
We are now incisively positioned both emotionally and spiritually to inculcate the power of coming together as a community. We have proven that we have wholeheartedly earned the moniker ‘El Paso Strong’ but as with any championship status, we now need to defend this coveted title. We will do so by the determination to protect ourselves and every member of our vulnerable community and finally and succinctly understand that when it comes to health, safety and well-being, our borders are simply fictitious and a hindrance toward regional unity and success.
In most cases, 2021 softened our hearts in ways we never knew were possible. However, this past year also filled some with justifiable anxiety, desperation, and a sense hopelessness as well as death, economic devastation, isolation, and a too rapidly changing world perplexed every living soul in our planet. The experiences we lived unprecedentedly touched the very rich to the very poor. The pandemic revealed to us what we intrinsically and instinctually knew… that we are all one race and not defined by ethnicity or gender. It is my wish that those that were less impacted by the crossfire of the pandemic or were most fortunate to withstand its barrage help those that were less fortunate. Yes, spread your love with your family and friends, but let your blessed cup runneth over to everyone that you meet in 2022.
Please take advantage of the tranquility of your Community Healing Garden at Ascarate Meadows. A tribute to the souls that died, those that were wounded and adversely impacted on that pivotal day of August 3rd. A serene place to enhance healing and unity for our entire community and those that visit from close and afar.
My best wishes and prayers for a blessed 2022!
Ricardo Samaniego
El Paso County Judge

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