|Attending the Presidential Inauguration|
As you may know, the next presidential inauguration will be held on Monday, January 21, 2013, on the Capitol grounds in Washington, D.C. If you are interested in attending, I encourage you to begin your travel plans now, as hotels, airlines, and Amtrak all sell out quickly.
You do not need a ticket to attend the inauguration. The National Mall will be open and equipped with large projection screens and sound systems so you can see and hear the festivities from as far as a mile away. You may also attend, without a ticket, the inaugural parade, which runs up Pennsylvania Avenue from the Capitol to the White House shortly after the swearing-in ceremony.
Certain areas around the Capitol will be open to ticket-holders only. As your representative in Congress, I have received a small allotment of tickets to these areas, and to ensure their fair distribution, my office will conduct a random lottery. All requests from the 12th Congressional District – including those from elected officials, friends, community leaders, and even my staff – will go through the lottery.
Further information on the inauguration is available on the website of the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies.
Trouble in Toyland
Earlier this week, the U.S. Public Interest Research Group (PIRG) released its annual Trouble in Toyland report, which provides safety guidelines for purchasers of toys for small children and lists toys that may pose safety hazards.
If you plan to shop for toys for small children over the holiday season, I encourage you to read through the report. In particular, PIRG found that lead paint, phthalates, and magnets in toys continue to pose potential safety risks. The full report is available online.
Medicare Open Enrollment Season Runs Through December 7
Medicare’s annual open enrollment season, during which recipients can make changes to their prescription drug coverage and Medicare Advantage plans, runs through December 7th. To learn more, visit Medicare.gov.
A Thanksgiving Thought About Our Great Land
From Aldo Leopold, in A Sand County Almanac (published posthumously 1949), one of the most important collections of essays in America:
"In short, a land ethic changes the role of homo sapiens from conqueror of the land-community to plain member and citizen of it. It implies respect for his fellow-members, and also respect for the community as such.
“In human history, we have learned (I hope) that the conqueror role is eventually self-defeating. Why? Because it is implicit in such a role that the conqueror knows, ex cathedra, just what makes the community clock tick, and just what and who is valuable, and what and who is worthless, in community life. It always turns out that he knows neither, and this is why his conquests eventually defeat themselves."