This month we are collecting your stories about the good things Americans are doing to make their community a better place. Some of your contributions will become blog posts and the project will end with a story that weaves together submissions to make a story of Americans by Americans for Americans.
Originally published on Wed August 8, 2012 4:09 pm
A couple of years ago, on a weekend in August, I was lying on the beach, reading. The sun shone, the waves crashed, and no plans lay ahead beyond soccer, grilling, maybe a stroll to the ice cream stand. My friend, on the towel next to mine, rolled over lazily and glanced at my book. His brow wrinkled. "Are you enjoying that?" he said, laughing.
Meet God, according to Simon Rich. He's a mostly nice dude — compassionate, though he gave up on listening to prayers and intervening in the lives of humans years ago. ("[H]e's really more of an ideas guy, you know?" explains an angel.) He loves golf and the music of Lynyrd Skynyrd, and he's not averse to enjoying a beer or two during the workday. He's easy to like, except for two things: He's planning to destroy all of humanity so he can focus on opening an Asian fusion restaurant in heaven; and even worse, he's a Yankees fan.
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Until gunshots erupted at a Sikh temple last Sunday, the community of Oak Creek, Wisconsin considered itself an oasis, a place where city meets country. Last night, hundreds of residents there tended an annual Night Out gathering, remembering the six people who were killed and honoring the injured.
Decades ago, there were hardly any Sikhs in the Milwaukee area. After a 1960s change in immigration law made it easier for people to reach the U.S. from Asia, they began flowing in. And one of the earliest arrivals was Swaranjit Arora, who came in the '60s and arrived in Milwaukee in 1972 to teach at the University of Wisconsin. He talked with us about how things have changed.