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I can't tell you how much I love when Passover and Easter are close together. And this year, the last day of Passover falls on Easter!


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They usually fall close to one another, and when the girls were young and celebrated everything (which many interfaith families do), it allowed me to be efficient in terms of gift-giving and celebration meals.


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I'll never forget you adding fluffy Easter bunnies and pastel-colored eggs to a Zabar's basket of Passover goodies. But I wasn't really thinking about that.


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Let me guess. You want to use this as an opportunity to remind me – once again – that the Comparative Religion class you took decades ago at Wake Forest University was one of the best classes you ever took.


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Fine, make fun of me. But that class was such an eye-opener. Before it, I thought there were huge differences between the religions. But the reality's very different. We have much in common.


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Yes, a belief in something bigger than us, in faith, in traditions, in celebrations that go back centuries.


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Exactly! And while people might celebrate different holidays based on their religion, when those holidays come close together it's a perfect reminder of what's truly important. Our fundamental values are so similar. If everyone could see that, maybe we'd be pulling together more and be torn apart less.


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It is up to each of us to decide whether we want to focus on our differences or our similarities.


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At this point, I'd settle for respect, tolerance, and understanding.


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You left out world peace. Well, given that Passover and Easter both celebrate history … and hope … maybe your request is reasonable after all.


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In that case, whether our readers are eating the last of the matzoh or hunting Easter eggs, I think we should wish them a very happy holiday … one filled with hope, happiness, and peace.


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You just did.
Photo by mevans on iStock


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Did you know that April's Autism Awareness Month? I wasn't aware (pun intended) of it until I read our local homeowner's monthly newsletter and it caught my eye.


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Actually, last month the founding organization, the Autism Society, changed "Awareness" to "Acceptance" to foster inclusivity, as knowing about something is very different from accepting it. But I am guessing that is not the point of this call.


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Although it isn't autism, it reminded me of years ago when we found out that Natasha has learning disabilities.


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I think you mean DIFF-abilities.


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Of course, that's another thing I remember. I was focused on the negative aspects of her diagnosis until you asked me, point-blank, "Why are they called disabilities?" And proceeded to explain that everyone has different strengths and weaknesses.


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Exactly! Imagine the world if everyone excelled at math, but flunked English. Or, a world of lawyers, but no musicians. Some people are better at social skills, while others excel at handling technical data. Why not just say that people who have different skillsets and abilities have DIFF-abilities versus making them feel like they have shortcomings?
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Well, the Oprah interview with Prince Harry and Meghan Markle was over a month ago, but I still see plenty of articles about it. It's really "stirred up" things in the Royal Family.


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Well, I guess it put "a bee in the royal bonnet." Although, I would not believe everything you read. Right after the interview, I read several articles suggesting the monarchy should end with Queen Elizabeth. I cannot imagine that happening.


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Oh, that isn't anything new. It's been going on for a long time; there was even talk of it when I lived in England decades ago. All the interview did was further encourage those who are already advocating it.


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At the risk of sounding like a broken record, but as I said in our Banter Bite, Talk About Getting The Royal Treatment, the Royal Family does seem to have "issues" in terms of race relations and dealing with mental illness. I can understand why people are questioning whether the monarchy, with its "old-fashioned" traditions and beliefs, is still relevant.


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But it's not like that's the only place those issues exist. Just pick up a newspaper, turn on the news – it's everywhere! Unfortunately, the Oprah interview put a very public face on it – The Royal Family, or The Firm, which is how the family and institution refers to itself.


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Who nicknames themselves The Firm? It sounds like a Netflix series, but with less class than " The Crown."
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