Following the death of Mao Zedong, former president and founding father of the People's Republic of China, more than 40 years ago, his successor, Deng Xiaoping, instituted economic reforms that looked less like classic communism and more like capitalism.
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The lyricist Oscar Hammerstein II wrote many beautiful songs for Broadway musicals. One that was not beautiful, but powerful for what it said about race relations in 1949 when the show opened was "You've Got to Be Carefully Taught." The song was about being taught to hate.
There once were summertimes when the living was easy, as the song from the Broadway musical "Porgy and Bess" melodically reminds us. But not this summer, not with COVID-19 still spreading dangerously across the land and uncertainty over what happens next after the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Afghanistan.
In his address to Congress on Dec. 8, 1941, following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, President Franklin Roosevelt said: "... we will not only defend ourselves to the uttermost but will make it very certain that this form of treachery shall never again endanger us. Hostilities exist. There is no blinking at the fact that our people, our territory and our interests are in grave danger. With confidence in our armed forces, with the unbounding determination of our people, we will gain the inevitable triumph, so help us God."