Hennen: Counteracting our anger in a world of bad news
"Recently, I asked the audience what one word best described their attitude these days and then what action they were taking as a result," writes InForum columnist Scott Hennen. "Sadly, most responses we received suggested "anger" is what best described what they were feeling."
I am blessed to have a pulse on what the people are thinking most days. It's a daily joy of mine to receive the hundreds of emails, texts and calls that pour in reacting to the news of the day. Radio talk shows were "social media" long before the term was a household phrase. It's long been an interactive dialogue that provides the listeners a channel to share their feelings.
Recently, I asked the audience what one word best described their attitude these days and then what action they were taking as a result. Sadly, most responses we received suggested "anger" is what best described what they were feeling. I wasn't surprised and I completely understand the sentiment.
The last two years have brought tough times. Some examples include our open border, inflation, the cost of gas and food spiking well beyond the "average inflation" numbers. The news blares every day.
Our standing around the world is in tatters. After the botched withdrawal in Afghanistan, America is no longer feared. Our warnings to Russia were ignored. Ukraine was invaded. China is openly threatening the United States on a regular basis.
Now we have an Inflation Reduction Act that does nothing of the sort. Even Sen. Bernie Sanders, who supported the legislation, said it won't reduce inflation. Instead, it authorizes the hiring of 87,000 new IRS agents to conduct more audits. What a legacy! Further, it doubles down on targeting our domestic energy champions, providing affordable, reliable energy.
I could extend this depressing litany of bad news, but you get the point.
There was already plenty to be angry about on Aug. 8 when FBI Agents raided the home of a former President. The bungling that our Department of Justice and FBI have deployed during the era of Donald Trump is staggering.
It would be understandable if people just decided to be angry, bitter and disengaged in the political process. But that would accomplish exactly nothing. It was refreshing to hear the responses of some of my listeners on what they are doing to counter their anger, frustration and overall sense of hopelessness.
“When I’m really frustrated, I focus on my faith,” one Bismarck listener remarked. “You have to.”
Another listener, from Fergus Falls, says his solution is to “take in the word of God, and not be anxious about the day and not to live in fear, knowing that God cares about each and every one of us.”
A Fargo listener says she’s hopeful and says she’s going to “go out in the world and be the church.”
Another wise listener had a simple response.
“Get a job, work it, live your life and do what you want to do,” he said.
The easy response to the times in which we live would be to opt out. I was greatly encouraged by the voices of North Dakotans and Minnesotans, who have a much better plan. What is yours?
Scott Hennen hosts the statewide radio program “What’s On Your Mind?” On AM 1100 “The Flag”, KFYR AM 550, AM 1090 KTGO “The Flag” and AM 1460 KLTC. Email him at ScottH@FlagFamily.com
This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Forum's editorial board nor Forum ownership.