Tonight is not about politics or obsessing over our inevitable differences, regardless of our gender, color, sexuality, wealth or religious beliefs. New Year’s Eve is a worthy cause for celebration, for appreciating our most obvious or overlooked blessings through joyous revelry with family, friends and the good will of complete strangers. It is a reminder that we are survivors, insatiable dreamers and forever bound by common needs and struggles. And although life is riddled with death and personal misfortune, despair and discord, I do not need to drift amidst the endless sea of tombstones marking departed loved ones and fallen heroes, or loiter in the streets of apathy and moral depravity, to recognize the ominous pitfalls that await my every step each 365 days of the year. Rather, on this festive night, I choose to drink from the fountain of humanity to honor mankind’s most quintessential gift: hope. Hope has resurrected hearts from the depths of hate, inspired the afflicted to cure illness, and slayed improbability by rousing starving peasants to defeat the corpulent armies of tyranny. Its strength is immeasurable, innately indelible, and represents the last untouchable vestige of liberty….our God-given rights….for hope is an undying remnant of love; of what could and can be when we drink from its universal chalice. So as you raucously raise your glass to the heavens tonight, kiss your loved ones or hug complete strangers, remember all that is right with this imperfect world and that no good thing ever truly dies; no matter how much we endure or must overcome. The most endearing resolutions are not those impulsive pledges made on any singular day or momentous occasion, but they are the unspoken virtues, selfless actions, we embody every uneventful day of our lives. God Bless, be safe, and Happy New Year!