Together we make a community
Published 11:21 pm Monday, February 18, 2019
The Natchez Democrat’s annual Profile edition will publish Sunday.
Producing the annual section taught me a lot about the Miss-Lou, which I have called home now for almost a year.
The theme for this year’s Profile edition is “This is Our Story,” and The Democrat staff and I worked hard to tell the stories not only of many people in the Miss-Lou who hold various roles in the community but also the stories of organizations within the community with a little bit of history in the mix.
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The idea of the edition is to help readers understand the different roles people play in making our community what it is and to offer a little historical background and information on some important community institutions to broaden that understanding.
We are all standing on the shoulders of giants, as Isaac Newton once said.
Any community is built on the work and effort people from the past put in to making the community what it is.
Once we realize the debt we owe our forebears, we can choose to build upon that effort or to let the good efforts dwindle.
Fortunately, the Miss-Lou has a great group of dedicated people who have chosen to build on the bedrock of our community and to try to make the community a better place than we inherited.
The usual suspects, including elected officials, community activists, business leaders, etc. are important parts of that equation. They are not, however, the main focus of this year’s Profile edition.
Instead, we have highlighted the everyday work of lesser-known community leaders who through their work make a difference in the lives of citizens every day.
By telling the individual stories of people and organizations and how they see themselves fitting in to the community through the roles they play, we get a better understanding of who we are as a community.
Also by looking at some of the people who came before us, we get a glimpse of where we’ve come from and how that past has influenced our present.
Today the Miss-Lou has its struggles, but the Miss-Lou has faced plenty of struggles in the past.
Working together as a community, region and state, people of the community have risen to the challenge and persevered.
In most cases, good prevailed over bad, and we emerged from the struggles stronger people ready to face new challenges.
The good and the bad times ebb and flow like the Mississippi River that runs through the Miss-Lou, but the progress is always forward.
Struggles and obstacles cannot overcome that inertia, and we proceed into the future.
It is how we handle those highs and lows that define us, mold us and make us better.
Judging by the people whose stories are highlighted in this year’s Profile edition, our community is ready for the challenges going into the future.
Be sure to pick up a copy of Sunday’s Democrat to get a copy of this year’s Profile edition.
I hope you will enjoy reading the stories of some of the Miss-Lou’s history, lesser known heroes, people’s work and motivations and how they help make our community what it is.
Scott Hawkins is editor of The Natchez Democrat. Reach him at 601-445-3540 or firstname.lastname@example.org.