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COLUMN: When politics gets you down, remember the good things in life

Tuesday, March 16, 2010 | 12:01 a.m. CDT; updated 9:44 a.m. CDT, Wednesday, May 12, 2010

I am an unrepentant news junkie.

Reading newspapers is my favorite pastime. And for a long time I spent at least two hours every evening watching cable news. I like the idea of being informed of what’s going on in the world at all times. Unfortunately, television news has become the latest victim to be assassinated by the two party system. So, I had no choice but to turn away from it several weeks ago.

I kept hoping that the broadcast media would see the light and use their resources more responsibly. Providing a 24–hour stage on which these political comedians can perform is a waste of expensive time. The time, as far as I’m concerned, would be better spent by providing the public with people in the field of political science discussing and debating the important issues of the day. They could perform a public service by presenting all sides of political issues from a non-political perspective and allow the viewers to make up their own minds.

Giving politicians the opportunity to spew the garbage that has been bought and paid for by corporation lobbyists is an insult to the citizenry. And it is not as though the news people are not aware of this fact. With the country toppling on the edge of bankruptcy, I would have thought professional journalists would understand that this is not a game we’re playing here and the future of the country is at stake. But apparently they have joined with a lot of other people that think America has all the time in the world to get serious about its survival.

In any case, I came to realize that listening to the country fall apart minute by minute was not conducive to enriching my mental health. I found myself becoming short tempered and impatient with people, for little or no reason. So, I made myself sit in the corner and think the matter over.

I was seething with anger in the first five minutes. I was disappointed to discover it had taken me that long to realize that I was giving these government tyrants way too much power. I was allowing them the privilege of messing with my mind to the extent that I was allowing them into my household and into my mind to poison me with their mean-spirited talk and behavior. Apparently, it is their desire to see the country fail, and while it is certainly not my will, I cannot afford to neglect my own affairs while I do a slow burn every time I gain sight of these miserable do-nothings.

First of all, I reminded myself that many Americans are jobless and homeless and have their hands full trying to maintain their existence. The financial situation throughout the country has induced so much stress on the average person that he or she is using whatever means they have at their disposal to relieve the pressure.

After we have expressed our displeasure with the government officials, there really is not much one person can do to affect change. So, while I was in the corner, I figured out that the best thing I could do to reduce the level of the tension around me was to find as many positive ways that I can to enhance the quality of my life and the lives of my friends and family.

I promised myself to remember that in spite of so many unpleasant circumstances, many individuals are still trying to go on with their lives as best they can. Some parents are determined that their children will not bear the brunt of this adult disaster and are providing healthy outlets where the family can share in worthwhile endeavors to improve their lifestyles.

Some are renovating their play areas, performing odd jobs to help out their neighbors and getting involved in community charity drives to assist the less fortunate. Young men and women are planning their marriages or anniversary celebrations for their parents and grandparents. Others are getting ready for family reunions where they can check each other out.

A good look around my community gave me a boost as I watched people go on with their lives and disregard the politician’s efforts to make them miserable. We realize, even if they don’t, that our country has many enemies in the world hoping that our country will self-destruct, so those of us who have maintained our sanity know that it is in our best interest to come together with each other as one people.

So lately I no longer get angry. Now I just get more determined every day to live the best life that I can live. And believe me, I have learned for sure, success is the best revenge.

You can join the conversation with Rose M. Nolen by calling her at 882-5734 or e-mailing her at nolen@iland.net.


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