Janis Adams

Janis Adams is an author and the award-winning columnist who pens Saving Grace. Her first book, A Complete Guide for Single Moms: Everything You Need to Know About Raising Healthy, Happy Children on You Own has met with critical success. She is at work on her next book, Bethlehem Steel: The Once All Powerful Behemoth. Follow Janis on her blog or on Twitter @JanisWrites.

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They Called Him a Dissident: Vaclav Havel (1936-2011)

by Janis Adams 12-19-2011
Václav Havel  Prague 2009. Via Via http://bit.ly/tTEMqp

Václav Havel during his speech at the Freedom and its adversaries conference held in Prague 2009. Via http://bit.ly/tTEMqp

Dissident has been defined as “one who challenges the established doctrine, a person who openly defies what has been set as standard or defined policy.”

Many would say that a dissident is the one who is the loudly clanging gong in a world already clamoring with dissonance, another voice we would simply like to be rid of or ignore.

For Vaclav Havel, it most certainly was not this way.

Yes, his words marked the world by challenging its mores. Moving people. Altering lives. Changing the world's map. All this was done with the engaging smoothness of a velvet approach. And this, among a host of many other attributes, will be why he will be so deeply missed and the loss of his life so greatly mourned.

The nation of Czechoslovakia has instated three days of national mourning for the man with the engaging smile. This time of imposed sadness – while a fitting tribute – does not seem nearly enough for a man who made it his purpose to reform hearts.