'Wonderful Life' is actually pretty hopeful

I am responding to the recent commentary, “Best Christmas movie ever? Not so fast” (Dec. 7), critical of “It’s a Wonderful Life,” an iconic movie that was made after World War II in 1946. To me, it is obvious that Eric Heavner didn't watch the movie with an open mind or maybe didn't pay attention. In the fifth paragraph, he states: "He loses hearing in one ear while saving a friend from drowning." The person who fell through the ice was his brother, Harry Bailey. I would like to think that any person would try to save their sibling from drowning. He continues: "He forgoes his dreams of travel and college to run his father's business." That is what family does and did. They step up to the plate to help their family when needed. Or they take over the family business. That still happens today. Again, in the same sentence: "His bank lends money to impecunious borrowers instead of making profit." He was taught to help others. Baby boomers and older people were taught to help your fellow man, help others, help your neighbor. It seems younger folks weren’t taught that lesson. They are the "me" generation. It’s all about me. What can I do for me? How can I get ahead? That is all fine but what about your fellow man, your friend, the person next door?

Mr. Heavner missed the point of the movie he describes as dark. It's about hope. It's about bad times getting better. It's about help from friends and neighbors, as you have helped them. It is about loving your fellow man. It is about putting someone else besides yourself first. And yes, an angel who earned his wings.

“It’s a Wonderful Life” is a warm, entertaining Christmas story that brings a smile to the many people who watch it. The message is not only for Christmas time, it is for every day.

Ann Hendley

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