Believe it or not, National Review Online has been online bringing you dedicated daily — hourly, minute-by-minute — commentary and news for the better part of two decades now. If you’re one of NRO’s charter readers, so to speak, you remember Jonah Goldberg’s bachelor days of tissue-box shoes and the first time he reminded us that someone somewhere in the country has a job as a spellchecker at an M&M factory.
It is a beautiful country.
Nostalgia has its blessings.
Some of you have grown up with NRO at this point! Some of you have shared with us some of the milestones in your lives. Some of you have been loyal National Review readers since our founding days in the 1950s. Or, as so many of you told me when our beloved William F. Buckley Jr. died, you were, like I was, raised a bit on WFB, a respected presence in your family life in print and on Firing Line. You can’t imagine a world without NR online or on dead tree, as we say, and in the culture and even your family life.
At whatever point you came in — and maybe it’s fairly recently on an iPad: welcome! — you probably found yourself here because you have respect for the freedoms that the American experiment has existed to preserve and protect and help flourish. You probably love your country and want to be a part of the renewal of its soul.
And when you wake up each morning and look to the future, you do worry. Especially if you have children — or have a sense of good stewardship — you are concerned.
Democracy flourishes when we wake up each morning and want to make a contribution, when we want to do well by those we love and are not indifferent to our brother in need. Beauty and excellence in culture is restored in new and creative ways when we think about excellence and what’s good and true.
If you clicked on this plea and have read on this long, you are grateful National Review Online is here. It’s not a given that any of us will be here tomorrow. And it’s certainly not a given that National Review Online will be here, doing what you have known us to do: keeping you informed, keeping you “sane” — or so you’ve told us year after year — keeping you entertained and inspired.
I meet NRO readers all across the country, and even throughout the world (Hi, Togo!). You tell me time after time about the news story you could not have made it through without NRO. You tell me NRO has been here for you. NRO has been here for you, so please be here for us. Believe it or not, we have readers now who don’t really know who WFB was. And don’t even remember a time when Americans beamed with pride and love for our country, optimistic about its future. Whatever you are seeing when you look ahead, don’t despair, don’t disengage, don’t go offline. Do support National Review Online. It takes money to be creative, to improve, to keep everything running and working, to bring you excellent on-the-scene and under-the-radar, even investigatory news and commentary. If National Review Online has been a welcome part of your life in any way, please consider supporting us today.
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— Kathryn Jean Lopez is editor-at-large of National Review Online.