CHELSEA, MA. – DECEMBER 4: Edith Zavala thanks a customer for donating along with Aracely Gamboa as they try to raise money for the Salvation Army at Market Basket on December 4, 2020 in Chelsea, Massachusetts. (Staff Photo By Matt Stone/ MediaNews Group/Boston Herald)

The long-awaited stimulus checks will be soon be in the mail for millions of Americans who have been financially sideswiped because of the pandemic. Some say it is too little too late. That’s one way to look at it. Or you can see it as better late than never.

If there is anything the COVID-19 crisis has taught us, it’s that America is a land of great disparity — from wealth and race to health care and more. But it is also a nation where people step up to help one another, from giving to those in need to speaking out when government fails us. We owe much thanks to “the squad” — Massachusetts’ own Rep. Ayanna Pressley, as well as Reps. Ilhan Omar, Rashida Tlaib and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who formed the squad in response to the deplorable treatment of immigrant children and the lack of resources. They were roundly criticized — first by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and then piled on by President Trump. But they held their ground. Ditto Republican Sens. Lisa Murkowski and Susan Collins, who were key players along with the late Sen. John McCain in the health care debate. In my opinion, we need more of the “speak truth to power” dynamic in our dysfunctional Congress.